BP to shut two Azerbaijan oil and gas platforms for maintenance in 2020

FILE PHOTO: The logo of BP is seen at a petrol station in Switzerland October 3, 2017. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

BAKU (Reuters) - British oil major BP BP.L plans to close down two of its oil and gas platforms in Azerbaijan for planned maintenance next year, BP's regional vice president told Reuters on Wednesday.

Bakhtiyar Aslanbayli, BP’s vice president for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, said the maintenance would take place in the second half of 2020.

He said that maintenance shutdowns would take place at Chirag and Shah Deniz-Alfa platforms.

A BP-led consortium produces oil at Azerbaijan’s giant Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli (ACG) oilfield and natural gas - at the major Shah Deniz field.

The Shah Deniz I field has been pumping gas since 2006, while output from Shah Deniz II is expected to reach 16 billion cubic metres (bcm) of natural gas per year, with 10 bcm earmarked for Europe and 6 bcm for Turkey.

Aslanbayli said the consortium planned to produce 16.6 bcm of gas at Shah Deniz this year.

“Gas output will be rising, while oil production will be declining as expected,” he said, adding that peak gas output would be in 2022-2023.

He said seismic works at bloc D-220 as well as drilling the first exploration well at the Shafag-Asiman gas field had been postponed to January next year due to bad weather conditions. Drilling will take 12-13 months.

Reporting by Nailia Bagirova; writing by Margarita Antidze; editing by Louise Heavens and David Evans