MOSCOW, April 1 Rosneft plans to start
production at its Yurubcheno-Tokhomskoye oilfield in eastern
Siberia in 2017, the company said on Tuesday, another delay for
a field key to Russia's efforts to at least keep oil production
at current levels.
Rosneft, Russia's biggest oil company and the world's
largest listed producer by output, said Yurubcheno-Tokhomskoye
will reach a production plateau of up to 5 million tonnes a year
(100,000 barrels per day) in 2019.
In 2012, Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin told investors in London
that the field was due to start production in 2016, with the
same plateau mentioned on Tuesday.
Previous management at Rosneft, where Sechin took over in
2012, had planned to start production in 2013 with the plateau
of up to 10 million tonnes a year.
Rosneft did not explain the change in launch time or
adjusted production figures on Tuesday but said that in the
future, the field could produce up to 7.3 million tonnes a year
(150,000 bpd). It gave no gave no time frame.
The field is to supply Asian markets via the East
Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline and feed the yet-to-be-built VNHK
petrochemical plant in Russia's Far East, it said.
Rosneft is preparing to more than double oil exports to
China to over 1 million bpd, seeking to secure market share and
billions of dollars in pre-payments.
However, Russian pipeline monopoly Transneft and
some analysts question whether Rosneft has the oil in the ground
to honour its supply commitments. Rosneft has said it will
honour all obligations.
Russia is now pumping over 10 million bpd, still the world's
highest, but the bulk of production comes from western Siberian
deposits which are depleting.
(Reporting by Katya Golubkova; Editing by Steve Gutterman and