Gazprom Neft, Japan to start Siberia oil output in 2016

MOSCOW, June 7 Fri Jun 7, 2013 5:10am EDT

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MOSCOW, June 7 (Reuters) - Gazprom Neft and Japan's JOGMEC will start jointly producing oil in East Siberia in 2016, the head of the Russian company said on Friday.

Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of Russian gas giant Gazprom , and Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp (JOGMEC) last year agreed to team up in the Chonsk project to develop oil and gas in East Siberia, a region with huge untapped hydrocarbon reserves.

Alexander Dyukov, Chief Executive Officer of Gazprom Neft, said the project, with 130.5 million tonnes of proven oil reserves under Russian classification and 230.9 billion cubic metres of gas, will start oil production in 2016.

JOGMEC, which was formed in 2004 when Japan's separate energy and mineral explorers merged, spent over $1 billion of investment in overseas oil and gas projects last year.

Its role became more pressing after the 2011 Fukushima crisis prompted the shutdown of Japan's nuclear capacity that accounted for a third of total power supplies in Japan.

JOGMEC has 49 percent in the East Siberia project and is committed to finance most of $100 million slated for exploration. (Reporting by Katya Golubkova; writing by Vladimir Soldatkin, editing by William Hardy)

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