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Greenfields galore for Russia

Eastern Siberia will be the engine for rising Russian oil and gas output for decades

Russia's Eastern Siberia region is to be the Kremlin's key upstream play over the next two decades as several new megaprojects come on line.

Total crude production would rise to the Kremlin's target of 2.37m barrels a day by 2035.

The plan is part of Russia's national energy blueprint covering the next 18 years, which calls for a 70% jump in the region's crude output from the 1.4m b/d achieved in 2016.

Eastern Siberia is one of the key regions in Russia's strategy for energy develop­ment. Vast hydrocarbon reserves, which the government regards as critical to the country's socio-economic development, and proximity to Asia-Pacific markets are the reason. Companies and investors seem to agree—all Russia's main producers are focused on the area.

The country's eastern oil and gas reserves are distributed over four main areas, including offshore Sakhalin Island, the Sakha republic (formerly known as Yakutia), and the Irkutsk and Krasnoyarsk regions.

Russian energy minister Alexander Novak says fields in Western Siberia, which produce over 60% of Russia's oil, are drying up and that new finds in the area are smaller and harder to work, leaving oil companies no choice but to head east.

Some of the most significant growth over the next two years will come from Rosneft's Yurubcheno-Tokhomskoe oil­field, which is expected to reach peak pro­duction of 100,000 b/d in 2019 and has estimated oil reserves amounting to 237m tonnes (about 1.7bn barrels).

The Suzunskoe field is part of Rosneft's Vankor cluster, along with the Lodochnoe and Tagulskoe fields, located in east Sibe­ria. Suzunskoe is expected to reach 4.5m tonnes (about 0.9m b/d) this year after recording 1.3m tonnes in the first quarter.

In the Evenk district, development con­tinues of the Kuyumba group of deposits, which will become a resource base for the new (MNP) Kuyumba-Taishet oil pipeline.

Eastern Siberia provides the main outlet for oil production growth for Surgutneftegas, which produces almost 9m t/y from six deposits, and it expects the figure to grow.

The government also plans to increase Far East gas production in the region by almost 2.5 times, from 2016's 32.8bn cubic metres, up to 80bn cm/y, by 2035.

This article is part of a report series on Top 10 upstream bright spots. Next article is: Mexico—zero to hero

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