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Investment strong despite fall in Russian licensing activity

Prospective areas with existing infrastructure and strong reserves profiles remained the most attractive upstream acreage for investors in recent years. Analysis by Alexander Chesnokov, Mikhail Gerasimchuk and Denis Afanasyev, of Deloitte

Oil and gas companies' investment in exploration and production (E&P) remains stable despite the fall in licensing activity in Russia in recent years, according to recent Deloitte analysis of the country's upstream activity. The most attractive regions for new E&P acquisitions are the mature West Siberian, Timan-Pechora and Volga-Urals oil and gas basins. About 70% of total spending was in West Siberia, where Lukoil, Rosneft and Novatek were the key investors in licence blocks. However, investment by independent producers was strong, and accounted for about $300 million over the past three years. Licences in the Volga-Urals region have the highest cost per barrel of oil equivalent (

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