Alfa Eko subsidiary, Petrosakh, has begun exploration efforts on the partially defined Sakhalin-6 block. The company is also looking for a strategic partner to help finance the venture. "We have begun negotiations with both foreign and Russian companies to form a consortium for the project," said Yury Shirmankin, first vice president at Alfa Eko. Talks with state-owned Rosneft are at an advanced stage, Shirmankin said. Rosneft has an interest in three other Sakhalin projects.
Alfa Eko plans on spending $400 million to develop its plot, and preliminary development of all of Sakhalin-6 is expected to cost $1.3 billion. "We don't have access to those kinds of funds, and so we are prepared to part with our controlling stake to bring in other partners," Shirmankin said.