Appraisal drilling by Gazprom at its Kirinskoye Yuzhnoye field in the Okhotsk Sea off Sakhalin Island has resulted not only in the addition of gas reserves, but also in the discovery of a big oil pool that should allow increasing 3P reserves ‘in the order of tens of millions of tons’.
Discovered in 2010, the field is located in 110 to 320m of water and is due to be commissioned in 2018. As part of the Sakhalin III project Gazprom operates three blocks: Kirinsky, Ayashsky and Vostochno-Odoptinsky. The Kirinsky block comprises the Kirinskoye gas and condensate field as well as the YuzhnoKirinskoye and Mynginskoye gas and condensate fields. To be mostly used for feeding the Sakhalin-Vladivostock gas transmission system, gas from the Sakhalin III project will ensure supplies to Far Eastern regions and help execute the Vladivostok LNG project. However, if the oil rim is confirmed, Gazprom may need to revise its plans.
Gazprom is investing heavily in developing new fields on Sakhalin Island and in East Siberia as part of the Eastern Gas Programme, which aims to gasify Russia’s remote eastern regions and to develop the gas production and transport capacity needed to achieve Russia’s goal of exporting gas to Asian markets.
In order to maintain high rates of infrastructure development in eastern Russia, Gazprom is cooperating with state authorities to create a favourable tax regime and streamline pricing mechanisms in the domestic market as well as introducing other state measures to support eastern projects.