By Leman Mammadova
Azerbaijani State Oil Company SOCAR together with BP Azerbaijan will conduct geological exploration at investment blocks in Uzbekistan.
Within the framework of the recent international exhibition “Oil and Gas of Uzbekistan - OGU 2019”, SOCAR signed two agreements in Tashkent.
Uzbekneftegaz, SOCAR and BP Azerbaijan signed an agreement on geological exploration at four investment blocks in the Aral Sea. The document provides for geological exploration in the Uzbek part of the Aral Sea, Samsko-Kosbulak and Baiterek investment blocks of the Ustyurt region. Exploration works will be carried out step by step, according to the schedule approved by the parties.
The second agreement, signed by SOCAR and Uzbekneftegaz, is related to the development of four fields in the Qashqadaryo Province.
The documents were signed by SOCAR Vice President Bahram Huseynov, Chairman of the Board of Uzbekneftegaz Bahodur Sidikov and BP Azerbaijan Vice President Greg Riley.
It should be noted that as of May 2018, Uzbekneftegaz, BP and SOCAR signed two memorandums to explore the possibility of conducting joint exploration and development of fields in Uzbekistan and a memorandum of understanding to explore the possibilities of exploration in the investment blocks of Uzbekistan.
Thus, BP has already begun exploration of the Fergana Valley and Karakalpakstan last year.
Moreover, SOCAR and Uzbekneftegaz reached an agreement on joint oil and gas operations in Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan, as well as in third countries in June 2017.
At the same time, in 2016, SOCAR and Uzbekneftegaz signed a memorandum providing for cooperation in the field of exploration and development of oil and gas fields and other potential areas for the development of the energy sector.
In recent years, 211 hydrocarbon deposits have been discovered in Uzbekistan. One of the last is the Lower Surgil field on the Ustyurt plateau. Here, at a depth of 3,600 meters, industrial reserves of gas condensate were found.
According to the State Statistics Committee, oil production in Uzbekistan decreased by 8.2 percent to 746,400 tons in 2018 compared with 2017, while natural gas production increased by 6.1 percent to 59.84 billion cubic meters.
Uzbekistan, which ranks first in the world in gas production, produces about 60 billion cubic meters of gas annually. According to recent data, natural gas reserves in Uzbekistan are 1.1 trillion cubic meters and oil reserves are 100 million tons. Uzbekistan will invest $30.4 billion in oil and gas sector by 2021.
By 2020, Uzbekistan plans to implement 38 projects in the oil and gas industry with a total value of about $20.6 billion. The projects will bring total gas production in the country to 53.5 billion cubic meters by 2017-2021, and oil production to 1.9 million tons.
The capacities of Uzbekneftegaz allow for the production of natural gas in the amount of about 70 billion cubic meters and liquid hydrocarbons in the amount of 8 million tons per year.
Leman Mammadova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @leman_888
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz