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KazTransGas National Gas Shipping Company to purchase annually 2.5-3 billion cubic meters of gas from Kashagan consortium

19 августа 2013, 13:08
Oil-processing plant at Kashagan field. ©REUTERS
Oil-processing plant at Kashagan field. ©REUTERS
KazTransGas National Gas Shipping Company has signed an agreement with Kashagan consortium member companies to purchase 2.5-3 billion cubic meters of gas a year to be produced at the giant Kashagan oilfield.

“According to the agreement, KazTransGas is to purchase all the gas to be produced at Kashagan at the initial stage of the PSA. The planned volume of gas to be produced is 2.5-3 billion cubic meters; this will enable to consolidate a substantial volume of gas to be supplied to the domestic market and international markets”, the press-release reads.

“70-80% of the gas will go to meet the domestic demand, with the other 20-30% to be exported”, KazTransGas Director General Serik Sultangali said at a press-conference following the signing ceremony.

Commercial production at the giant Kashagan oilfield is to start as early as in October, KazTAG reported July 18, citing the country’s newly appointed oil and gas minister Uazakbai Karabalin as saying.

“The project is 98% complete. We have inspected the readiness of the artificial islands that are home to drilling equipment. Hopefully, the commercial production will start this coming October”, the minister said while on a working tour round Atyrau oblast, a major oilbearing area in the West of Kazakhstan.

The Kashagan field, named after a 19th century Kazakh poet from Mangistau, is located in the Kazakhstan sector of the Caspian Sea and extends over a surface area of approximately 75 kilometers by 45 kilometers. The reservoir lies some 4,200 meters below the shallow waters of the northern part of the Caspian Sea and is highly pressured (770 bar of initial pressure). The crude oil that it contains has high ‘sour gas’ content.

The development of Kashagan, in the harsh offshore environment of the northern part of the Caspian Sea, represents a unique combination of technical and supply chain complexity. The combined safety, engineering, logistical and environmental challenges make it one of the largest and most complex industrial projects currently being developed anywhere in the world.

According to Kazakhstan geologists, geological reserves of Kashagan are estimated at 4.8 billion tons of oil. According to the project’s operator, the oilfield’s reserves are estimated at 38 billion barrels, with 10 billion barrels being recoverable. Besides, natural gas reserves are estimated at over 1 trillion cubic meters. The consortium developing the field comprises Eni, Shell, ExxonMobil, Total and KazMunaiGaz (all with a 16.81% stake) as well as ConocoPhillips (8.4%) and Japan's Inpex (7.56%).

NCOC, a consortium developing the giant Kashagan oilfield, plans to produce 75 000 barrels of oil per day at the initial production stage, Tengrinews.kz reported mid-May 2012, citing NCOC Vice Managing Director Zhakyp Marabayev as saying on the sidelines of a CIS summit on oil and gas.

According to him, plans are there to bring the production figure up to 350 000 barrels a day or even up to 450 000 barrels a day at the first stage of the oilfield development.

“The current facilities enable to produce up to 350 000 barrels a day (…) Should the gas injection capacities be expanded, we could produce up to 450 000 barrels a day”, he said at that time.

ConocoPhillips will sell its 8.4-percent stake in Kashagan to KazMunaiGas for $5 billion, Tengrinews.kz reported July 3, citing the company’s official website.

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