Exploitation of flank license blocks is leading to further expansion of Gazprom Neft’s resource base

Gazprom Neft has, for the first time, acquired geological prospecting licenses for flank blocks at developed fields — these new blocks, the Sverdlovsky 4 and Yuzhno-Zimny, being located in the Sverdlovsk and Tyumen Oblasts.

The “flank” mechanism gives existing subsoil users a priority right to secure prospecting licenses to blocks in the Unallocated Subsoil Reserve Fund within a 20-kilometre zone around fields currently under development — such flank blocks not being expected to contain any recorded hydrocarbon or solid mineral reserves.

The geological prospecting license for the Sverdlovsky 4 block, at the Raul-Yuri Erve (Ourinskoye) flank field, was acquired by Evrotek-Yugra (a Gazprom Neft—Repsol joint venture).* Covering an area of 590 square kilometres, reserves in place at this asset stand at 21 million tonnes of oil.

Gazprom Neft subsidiary Gazpromneft-Khantos has acquired the geological prospecting licence to the Yuzhno-Zimnee block, adjacent to the Zimnoye field.** This asset is located in the Uvatsky district of the Tyumen Oblast, and covers an area of 445.9 square kilometres. Data from the State Register of Mineral Reserves indicates recoverable reserves at this asset stand at 6.8 million tonnes of oil.

Geological prospecting licenses to both blocks have been issued for a period of five years. Prospecting and appraisal programmes at both assets will be prepared by the end of 2019, with seismic works starting in 2020.

Yuri Masalkin, Director for Geological Exploration and Resource Base Development, Gazprom Neft, commented: “Developing the flank programme will allow Gazprom Neft to gain access to interesting blocks for exploration, quickly, and at minimal cost. This new mechanism also helps give a second wind to fields under development. The company made an assessment of 20-kilometre flank zones in the Khanty-Mansi, Yamalo-Nenets and Orenburg Oblasts in 2018, identifying the most promising assets. We plan to acquire a further 10 flank licenses before the end of the year.”
Yuri Masalkin
Yuri Masalkin Director for Geological Exploration and Resource Base Development, Gazprom Neft
Reference

* The Raul-Yuri Erve (Ourinskoye) field is located within the Karabashsky-1 and Karabashsky-2 blocks in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, on the border with the Sverdlovsk Oblast. It is one of the largest fields discovered in recent years in Russia in terms of reserves, with recoverable oil reserves of approximately 34 million tonnes. The field forms part of the asset portfolio of Evrotek-Yugra, established by Gazprom Neft and Repsol to develop blocks in the Karabashsky area.

** The Zimnee field is located on the border between the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug’s Kondinsky district and the Tyumen Oblast’s Uvatsky district. Discovered in 1992, this asset has been under development since 2006. The field’s initial recoverable reserves stand at 31.6 million tonnes of oil.