CGES: Russia's 2011 output sets new post-Soviet production record

The Centre for Global Energy Studies, London, said Russia’s oil production for 2011, which topped 2010 by a whisker, reached a record high for the post-Soviet period.

“For the year as a whole, Russia’s oil production averaged 10.28 million b/d, up just over 120,000 b/d (1.2%) over the previous year, setting a new post-Soviet record,” CGES said in a new report.

Citing preliminary figures published by the Russian Ministry of Energy, CGES said Russia’s production in December 2011 reached 43.65 million tonnes, averaging 10.28 million b/d.

Russia’s December output was down by 35,000 b/d, or 0.33%, from the previous record set in October 2011, but was nearly 160,000 b/d, or 1.6%, higher than October 2010.

Russian oil production slipped slightly on a daily average basis in the month just ended. The country produced 43.65 million tonnes of oil in December 2011, according to initial figures published by Russia’s Ministry of Energy.

Using its conversion rate for Russian crude oil of 7.3 bbl/tonne, CGES said the figures equate to an average production rate of 10.28 million b/d over the month. The figure was up by 160,000 b/d, or 1.56%, from the same period in 2010.

However, CGES noted that Russia’s December 2011 oil production was down by 25,000 b/d, or 0.25%, from the November 2011 level and 35,000 b/d, or 0.33%, from the previous record level achieved in October 2011.

CGES concluded that Russia’s year-on-year oil production growth has slowed significantly from the levels seen during 2010, when incremental production was running at 200,000 b/d.

The group ascribed that to large year-on-year increases in production from a number of new Greenfield projects, which were more than sufficient to offset declines at older fields in West Siberia.

“As the output growth rates at these new projects has slowed, so their ability to offset declines elsewhere in Russia has diminished,” the group said.

While Russia produced 670 billion cu m (bcm) of gas in 2011, 19 bcm, or 2.9%, more than in 2010, the output of state-owned Gazprom’s was down 1.5 bcm, or 0.3%, year on year. Meanwhile, CGES said other producers saw their aggregate output increase by nearly 20 bcm, or 13.9%, compared with 2010.

CGES said Russia’s gas production, including both free and associated gas, reached 62.95 bcm in December, down 0.6 bcm, or 1%, compared with December 2010.

Using its own calculations, CGES said Gazprom’s gas production was down by just over 1.7 bcm, or 3%, from the previous December’s level at 47.94 bcm, while production by other producers increased by 8% year-on-year in December to reach 15 bcm.

CGES noted that Gazprom’s figures contrast with the aggregate output of 162 bcm by other producers, which was up by almost 20 bcm or nearly 14%. Non-Gazprom producers accounted for just over 25% of Russia’s total gas production in 2011, up from just under 24% in 2010 and 17% in 2008.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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