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Russian Gazprom Neft raises 2018 output on year to 1.286 mil b/d

Highlights

Northern greenfields, Iraqi projects underpin the growth

Production growth rate trimmed in line with OPEC/non-OPEC deal

Moscow — Russia's Gazprom Neft increased its 2018 liquids production "insignificantly" to 1.286 million b/d in 2018 amid output restrictions under the OPEC/non-OPEC production deal, the company said Thursday.

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Gazprom Neft, a leader in the country's crude production growth before Russia entered production cut deal with OPEC, saw only a 0.9% increase year on year in 2018. To compare, its production grew by 4% in 2016, before the deal came in force.

The slowdown in production growth came as the company was to limit its operations, including drilling, at a number of assets, in line with its production cut quota, it said in the financial and operational report for the fourth quarter and full year 2018.

Gazprom Neft expects its crude production to grow 2% year on year in 2019, taking into account the current OPEC-led agreement on production limits, which is set to be in place for the first six months of the year, CEO Alexander Dyukov said last week.

In 2018, the increase in production came mainly from its northern Novy Port, East-Messoyakha and Prirazlomnoye greenfields as well as from Iraqi projects, the company said in the report.

Gazprom Neft's production at the Badra project in Iraq as well as its projects in Kurdistan amounted to 1.61 million mt, or around 32,332 b/d, in 2018, up nearly 24% year on year, according to the company.

The company's total hydrocarbons' production rose by 3.8% year on year to 1.89 million barrels of oil equivalent. This is largely due to the 9.4% year on year increase in gas production to 1.314 trillion cubic feet, it said.

Refining throughput rose by 7% year on year to 42.91 million mt or 861,729 b/d, on low base of 2017 when the company carried out maintenance work at a number of its refineries.

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Net income jumped 48.7% year on year to Rb376.667 billion ($5.7 billion) as earnings rose by 28.7% on year to Rb2.5 trillion, due to oil prices growth and an increase in the sales of oil products, it said.

RESERVES RISE

The company has significantly expanded its reserves base through exploration and purchases of new licenses in 2018.

Its total proved reserves grew by 2.9% year on year to 11.607 billion barrels of oil equivalent, including 7.038 billion boe of liquids and 27.415 trillion cubic feet of gas, the company said, citing the evaluation by DeGolyer & MacNaughton under PRMS standards.

The figures do not include major recent findings in the Okhotsk Sea, Neptun (with resources in place estimated at 415.8 million mtoe or 3 billion boe) and Triton (up to 137 million mtoe).

Gazprom Neft plans to continue exploration at its shaping up Sakhalin cluster through 2021, targeting crude production launch in the area for 2025-2026, Dyukov said last week in Sochi.

-- Nadia Rodova, nadia.rodova@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Ikhhlaq Singh Aujla, newsdesk@spglobal.com