Tight Oil Seen Driving Gazprom Neft Hydrocarbon Output Higher In 2015
MOSCOW, April 2 (Reuters) - Russia's Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of the world's top gas producer Gazprom, expects to ramp up hydrocarbon production this year, a deputy head of the company said on Thursday, thanks to new projects and unconventional oil.
Gazprom Neft has been among the most active companies tapping tight oil in Russia.
In 2014, Gazprom Neft's hydrocarbon output rose by 6.4 percent to 66.3 million tonnes of oil equivalent thanks to the launch of output at Prirazlomnoye, Russia's first offshore Arctic production outlet, and new projects such as Arcticgaz.
Last year, it produced 3.2 million tonnes of hard-to-recover crude and plans to ramp up output this year despite Western sanctions that prohibit exports of technology for shale oil in Russia.
Shell had to scrap plans to form a joint venture to tap tight oil with Gazprom Neft in Russia last year.
Vadim Yakovlev, a deputy head at Gazprom Neft, also confirmed that the company is delaying development at the Kuyumba deposit in East Siberia due to sanctions against Moscow over its role in the Ukraine conflict.
"Obviously, it (the sanctions) are having an impact on the project's development," he told reporters, adding that the company would postpone the start of oil production there by one year to the end of 2018.
Yakovlev said the company expects to ship the first tanker of 500,000 barrels of oil from the Iraqi Badra field later this month.
Gazprom Neft has been extracting oil at the field at a pace of 15,000-17,000 barrels per day, he said.
The oilfield is located in Wasit Province, eastern Iraq, with an estimated 3 billion barrels of oil in reserve. The company submitted a tender in December 2009 and signed a contract with the government in January 2010 to develop the field.
Production is expected to reach 170,000 barrels per day in 2017.
He declined to comment on moves by the Iraqi government to review its oil-production agreements with international firms following a drop in crude prices.
(Reporting by Olesya Astakhova; Writing by Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Gabriela Baczynska, Lidia Kelly and Dale Hudson)
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