The Sakhalin-I field in far-east Russia in which India has a big stake began production of oil and gas Saturday, according to the Hindu newspaper Sunday.
The Indian ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), an overseas company of the Indian Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, bought a 20 percent stake in Sakhalin-I project for 1.7 billion US dollars in 2001. Last November, India approved 1.1 billion US dollars of additional investment in Sakhalin-I. The OVL plans to ship about 700,000 barrels of oil from the field to India from April next year.
The Sakhalin-I, which includes the Chayvo, Odoptu and Arkutun- Dagi fields, is to produce 23,000 barrels of oil and about 58 million cubic feet of gas every day and it is expected to produce some 12.5 million tonnes of oil and 10 billion cubic meters of gas annually at its peak production level.
The Total production of Sakhalin-I in its 40-year life cycle is estimated at 307 million tonnes of oil and 485 billion cubic meters of gas.
The Sakhalin-I consortium, which includes the stakes of Exxon Neftegas Ltd (operator) 30 percent, Japanese Sodeo-30 percent, Russian RN-Astra LLC-8.5 percent, and Russian Sakhalinmorneftgaz- Shelf-11.5 percent, has already hired five ice class tankers on a long-term charter.
Tankers will be delivered next year and the OVL will hire one of these to transport its share of output to India.