Russia's Rosneft, BP agree to jointly tap Arctic oil and gas

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MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian energy giant Rosneft and its shareholder BP have agreed to jointly develop oil and gas deposits in Russian Arctic Yamal-Nenets region, Rosneft said on Thursday.

The deal covers the Kharampurskoe and Festivalnoye license areas with total reserves exceeding 880 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas.

Rosneft said the project involved developing reserves of “the Cenomanian deposit, pilot production and subsequent full-scale development of the Turonian deposit, as well as oil production optimization and efficiency.”

The agreement would enhance gas cooperation between Rosneft and BP, the Russian company said.

Rosneft has focused on natural gas production, aiming to raise its output to 100 bcm a year in 2020 from 67 bcm in 2016.

Rosneft said Wednesday an international consortium had started production at the Zohr gas field in Egypt, the largest in the Mediterranean Sea and in which it has a stake.

Rosneft will hold a majority stake of 51 percent in the Russian project, BP will hold 49 percent. Produced oil and gas will be marketed by Rosneft.

Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Maria Kiselyova and Edmund Blair