Gazprom Neft has used the occasion of this year’s St Petersburg International Economic Forum to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Austria’s OMV Aktiengesellschaft. The document, confirming both companies’ interest in implementing projects in the oil and gas sector, was signed by Vadim Yakovlev, First Deputy CEO, Gazprom Neft, and Johann Pleininger, Executive Board Member Responsible for Upstream (Exploration & Production), OMV Group.
The agreement confirms Gazprom Neft’s and OMV’s interest in joint operations within the Islamic Republic of Iran. Potential cooperation extends to the preliminary analysis, evaluation and investigation of oil fields located within Iran, in collaboration with the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC).
Vadim Yakovlev, First Deputy CEO, Gazprom Neft, commented: “The Middle East is a priority area in terms of Gazprom Neft’s long-term development strategy. The company is already implementing a major project in developing the Badra oilfield in Iraq, is engaged in geological prospecting in the Kurdistan Autonomous Region in that country, and is investigating the possibility of participating in the development of two blocks in Iran. Given OMV’s extensive experience in the Middle East, and in Iran, in particular, I have every confidence that our joint geological prospecting and asset evaluation will be as effective as possible.”
Johann Pleininger, Executive Board Member Responsible for Upstream (Exploration & Production), OMV Group, added: “Russia is increasingly one the priority regions in which OMV sees opportunities for developing its upstream business, and we are keen to establish long-term partnerships with the country, and with Russian oil and gas companies. This is in line with our strategy in terms of exploration and production, which links our activities in Russia with the search for new opportunities for OMV in the Middle East.”
OMV (Österreichische Mineralölverwaltung AG) is an Austrian vertically integrated oil company (VIOC) — the most important in Central Europe — headquartered in Vienna.
Gazprom Neft is currently involved in implementing four projects in the Middle East, the most important of these being the development of the Badra field, located in the Wassit Province of eastern Iraq. Preliminary estimates indicate geological reserves (oil in place) at the Badra field at three billion barrels of oil. Commercial production here was initiated in August 2014.
The company has a further three assets in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, with Gazprom Neft being operator of the Halabja, Shakal and Garmian blocks.