Gazprom Neft subsidiary Gazprom Neft Shelf has won the licensing round for subsoil usage rights (including geological prospecting, development and production) to the Yuzhno-Obsky license block. This new asset is located in the waters of the Gulf of Ob in the Kara Sea, in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug.
The company estimates geological reserves in place at the block at more than 400 million tonnes of oil. Confirming this will require 3D seismic works and construction of at least one exploratory well. A project for pilot operations at the Yuzhno-Obsky block will be put in place in 2019, after which the company will begin geological prospecting.
Andrey Patrushev, Deputy CEO for Offshore Projects, Gazprom Neft, commented: “Including the Yuzhno-Obsky among Gazprom Neft’s other license blocks strengthens the company’s position in a key region of activity, and turns over a new page in developing offshore fields in the Kara Sea. Winning the auction marks an important step forwards in implementing the company’s strategy in developing its resource base. The Yuzhno-Obsky block sits well with the major Novy Port project. Gazprom Neft will continue its development of a powerful oil-production cluster in the Arctic.”
Major fields were discovered in the Gulf of Ob in the 2000s, which are now being prepared for commercial development. Following 2D seismic works conducted south of the Novy Port field in 2001 — 2004, the Payutovskoye elevation was discovered in the waters of the Gulf of Ob, and the promising Yuzhno-Obsky license block earmarked for subsequent licensing. The block was, until recently, part of Russia’s unallocated subsoil reserve fund.