An auction was held in Irkutsk on December 16 for the right to explore and produce oil and gas at the East-Sugdinsk prospective petroleum area in the Irkutsk Oblast. The winner was Rosneft, bidding 7.47 billion rubles for the license.
The license entitles the holder to use the East-Sugdinsk subsoil area for exploration and hydrocarbons production for a term of 25 years, including for subsoil exploration for a term of up to 5 years.
The auction was held by the Irkutsk Oblastís Territorial Subsoil Use Agency. The starting price was 300 million rubles, with increments of 10%.
The East-Sugdinsk area is situated in the Katangsk region of the Irkutsk Oblast (75 km. east of the village of Erboganchen). It has an area of 2,400 sq.km and contains no major populated areas.
C3 gas reserves are estimated at 42 billion cubic meters, C3 category oil at 60 million tons, and D2 category oil at 150 million tons. In tectonic terms, the East-Sugdinsk subsoil area is within the Nepsko-Botuobinsk petroleum area. Its oil and gas perspective is rated highly due to the nearby Verkhnechonsk (around 100 km.), Vakunay and Tympuchikan deposits.
Pursuant to the terms of the auction, the winner has to conduct at least 800 linear km. of 2D seismic research within 3 years of the state registration of the license. Within 4 years of the licenseís registration, no less than 3 appraisal wells must be built.
According to Rosneftís First Vice-President, Nikolai Borisenko, the company believes that the reserves of the East-Sugdinsk area may significantly increase following exploration works.
Rosneftís participation and success at the auction mark another step in the companyís ongoing strategy to increase oil and gas production potential through reserves in the East Siberian region. In November this year, Rosneft acquired 25.94% in OJSC Verkhnechonskneftegaz, the holder of the license for the Verkhnechonsk deposit with recoverable oil reserves of over 200 million tons, situated adjacent to the East-Sugdinsk area.
The first East Siberian project launched by Rosneft in 2003 is the development of the Vankor group of fields in the Krasnoyarsk Territory.