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Russia will have to find a new oil
Material posted: Publication date: 29-03-2017
The last of the major land deposits of Russia auctioned. The budget will earn billions of rubles, the winner - billions of dollars, but the most important arising in connection with this another question. Whether the traditional Russian oil deposits are close to exhaustion - and how much fossil fuel is left?

Rosnedra give the last largest land oil field in Russia – Aginskoe. Applications for participation in auction are accepted until may 12 and the winner will be announced until June 7. The starting fee for Elginskoe field increased from 5.35 billion rubles to 7 billion rubles.

Urginsky the subsoil in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous district (KHMAO) is the largest explored area of the undistributed Fund of the Russian Federation. Geological oil reserves at the Deposit are 64,971 million tons of C1 category (proven reserves) and 307,195 million tons of C2 category (potential reserves beyond proven areas). Recoverable oil reserves are estimated at 18,842 million tons for C1 category and 83,877 million tons of C2 category.

The auction for this field has been repeatedly postponed. First, the obligatory condition was to attract foreign partners, however, after the head of Rosneft Igor Sechin to President Vladimir Putin this requirement ruled out.

On such a tidbit many applicants. It and Rosneft, and Gazprom Neft and Independent oil and gas company, Surgutneftegaz, and NOVATEK. However, the increase in entry fee by almost 1.65 billion rubles can reduce the number of applicants. A favorite is Rosneft, but her serious competition may be Gazprom Neft. Elginskoe field is part of the Priobsky Deposit, and the blocks of which it develops Rosneft, and South - Gazprom Neft.

Another condition of the auction – refining of the oil deposits on Russian NPZ. All applicants, in addition to NOVATEK, a private refinery. The winner will have during the year to approve the project and a year later to run it.

When the oil runs in Russia?

But most importantly, this is the last major conventional oil field, which had left Russia. What will happen next? Really horror stories about what a couple of decades of oil in Russia will end, begins to acquire more real?

The theory that oil will end, as it is small, was particularly popular in 2003-2004 However, the long-forgotten fears in recent years it has been revived again. Recently the head of Sberbank German Gref said that the raw materials we will last only until 2028-2032 years, i.e. 10-20 years. However, oil and experts disagree.

This month, energy Minister Alexander Novak said that Russia has proven oil and gas reserves for more than 50 years (the cost of production is only 10-15 dollars per barrel), and additionally there is a huge potential of hydrocarbons on the shelf, in the Arctic.

"I was surprised to read "horror stories" that oil in Russia will soon end and "all is lost" - said in the latest interview with TASS, the Minister of natural resources and environment Sergey Donskoy. - So: our traditional proven hydrocarbon reserves will last for at least 30 years – if it is not to invest in Geologorazvedka and new technologies. And we are investing every year, so in 30 years we will have enough at the same forward. And so happy to say to all the detractors will not wait."

"Gref clown makes some statements over others. And notice, he never says that oil will run out by 2028, he says that the oil will not be needed as a commodity, because there will be electric cars. That is another discourse," - says the General Director of the national energy security Fund Konstantin Simonov. However, the consumption of oil, in spite of these statements, is growing. "Last year, oil demand grew faster than the average for the decade. Even signs of a reverse trend there. Trolls are just lobbying for their projects – financing green energy", - said the source.

Fears about the oil shortage are prevalent in the mass consciousness, whereas in reality the situation is completely different, experts say. "We have a ratio of proved reserves to annual production in Western qualification is 25 years. Here the old fear that in 25 years we will Wake up and not a drop of oil will not. But the situation is actually different. Every year we put on a balance more than produced. However, the question of whether there is paper stocks because the growth of new stocks to a considerable extent is due to the revaluation of old," - says Simonov.

In Western Siberia are indeed a part of the deposits are close to exhaustion. However, in Russia there are a number of the largest by global standards, with reserves in billions of barrels, just the oil not yet put on the balance sheet. So, the oil reserves on the continental shelf in the West Siberian basin are estimated at 3.6 billion barrels and in the Barents sea at 7.4 billion barrels.

However, in these regions it is necessary to create from scratch the entire oil infrastructure, says Roman Tkachuk from Alpari. It also requires the involvement of the overseers of debt financing that in the current low oil prices are undesirable. Plus the need to attract foreign partners to guarantee the markets.

"The most important thing happened in the US shale gas revolution that it has shown the existence of unconventional oil. This is a new kind of oil, which allowed the new stocks put on balance. This applies not only shale oil, but oil production from tar Sands, etc." - said Simonov. So, in Canada due to the supply balance of oil from tar Sands reserves have increased significantly since the 90-ies. In the end, Canada occupies the third place in the world in proven reserves of oil, losing only to Venezuela and Saudi Arabia.

It is clear that the cost of production of unconventional oil will be higher, and you have to scout. The level of knowledge of the shelf is still too low. "But it's one thing when you have a more expensive oil, and another thing, when you have no oil. Here in Japan there is no oil and we have it. America's got shale oil in Canada - bitumen oil, we have Bazhen and shelf", - said the source.

In addition, the period of low oil prices will not last forever. And to develop the shelf don't need $ 100 per barrel. "According to our estimates, most of the projects in Eastern Siberia and on the shelf be profitable at oil prices in the range of 60-80 dollars per barrel. But for the development of the Arctic shelf will also need the assistance of modern technology possessed by Western countries. Therefore, the development can stretch more and in the question of lifting the sanctions," - says Roman Tkachuk.

If Brent will be below $ 60 to $ 70, then Russian companies will continue to squeeze the juice from fields in Western Siberia, KHMAO, boring additional wells.

It is impossible not to admit that in Russia there is a problem with a low level of geological exploration of new deposits.

"The state was the Foundation of large deposits that had been accumulated since the Soviet times. Now on exploration stand out funny money", - says the head of the NESF.

The problem can be solved, dopustiv this process, private companies. The idea is simple: private companies are able to engage in exploration and further exploration, making discoveries, go to the exchange and sell these discoveries, licenses to other companies who invest in production. However, until this idea is implemented only on paper.

Olga Samofalova


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