Oil production at Kashagan to reach 7 million tons in 2017 — ministry

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ASTANA (TCA) — Kazakhstan’s Energy Ministry expects oil production at the Kashagan oil field to be at four to seven million tons in 2017, Energy Minister Kanat Bozumbayev said on the sidelines of the Kazakh Parliament meeting on October 27, the official website of the Prime Minister of Kazakhstan reported.

“Next year, we are planning the oil production at Kashagan between 4 million and 7 million tons. It all depends on the equipment and wells,” Bozumbayev said.

In his words, it is expected that Kashagan will produce one million tons of oil before the end of this year.

The development of the Kashagan field is implemented in several stages. Currently, the first stage is under implementation, known as the “experimental-industrial development program”.

On October 12, Bozumbayev said that after Kashagan’s launch, four wells were producing 90 thousand barrels of crude oil per day.

He also said that Bolashak oil purification plant which receives crude from Kashagan had already been launched.

Kashagan is a huge oil field located in the Kazakh sector of the Caspian Sea.

The North Caspian Operating Company (NCOC), the international consortium running the Kashagan project, includes Kazakhstan’s national oil and gas company Kazmunaygas, Eni, ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Total, Inpex, and CNPC.

The frequently delayed Kashagan project suspended work in September 2013, weeks after production finally kicked off, when the two 90-kilometer pipelines linking the Caspian offshore site to Kazakhstan’s mainland started leaking.

Kashagan resumed production in October 2016, after work on the pipelines’ replacement had finished.

Kashagan’s oil reserves are estimated at 38 billion barrels including around 10 billion barrels of recoverable reserves.

But the project is a decade behind schedule and the estimated cost of the project has shot up from $50 billion originally to $135 billion.

Sergey Kwan

TCA