Russia is planning to auction 17 state-held oil and gas blocks located in its core hydrocarbon province of West Siberia, in September and October.
A total of 20 five-year exploration and development licences for seven blocks are scheduled to be auctioned in the Yamal-Nenets region, which hosts mostly gas deposits exploited by Gazprom, Novatek and Rosneft.
The authorities hope they will be able to sell similar licences for 10 tracts in the neighbouring Khanty-Mansiysk region, which hosts oilfields operated by Russia’s major producers.
The Khanty-Mansiysk blocks are significantly smaller than those offered in Yamal-Nenets, with authorities having failed to find investors for several tracts for years because of their remote location and lack of confirmed reserves. One asset — Salymsky 6 — was returned to the state in 2017 when Spain’s Repsol decided not to proceed with exploration drilling after acquiring seismic data on the acreage.
Novatek in front seat
However, the fate of at least two Yamal-Nenets blocks has already been determined, with authorities having agreed to restrict potential bidders to Russia’s largest independent gas producer Novatek and its wholly owned subsidiaries.
These tracts contain two discovered fields — Arkticheskoye and Neytinskoye — which hold combined estimated confirmed and potential resources of over 670 billion cubic metres of natural gas.
Novatek had earlier petitioned the government for the acreage, arguing that the two blocks, covering a total area of 3500 square kilometres, fit well with the company’s long-term plan to commercialise gas resources on the Yamal and Gydan Peninsulas by exporting volumes as liquefied natural gas to international markets.
oth children and teenagers could participate and win valuable prizes.
Russian authorities said they will be ready to award licences for the two tracts hosting the Arkticheskoye and Neytinskoye fields to Novatek for a total payment of almost 12 billion roubles ($159 million).
Starting bids for other Yamal-Nenets blocks are significantly lower, with the next highest being 957 million roubles for the North Kharasaveysky block.