Russian Firms To Invest $22.5 Billion In Oil Production In 2018

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By Tsvetana Paraskova

Russian companies are expected to invest US$22.5 billion (1.3 trillion rubles) in oil production this year, with crude output and exports forecast at the same levels as in 2017, Russia’s Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Friday.

Russia’s vertically integrated oil companies invested US$23 billion (1.33 trillion rubles) in oil production in 2017, up by 10 percent compared to the 2016 investments of US$21 billion (1.21 trillion rubles), Novak said, as quoted by the TASS news agency.

“Last year we had a very large increase of 10%, so maintaining this level would be a good figure,” Novak noted.

Despite the OPEC/non-OPEC deal, Russia’s average daily crude oil production inched up again last year, to a 30-year-high of 10.98 million bpd. Russia’s pledge in the production cut deal is to shave off 300,000 bpd from the October 2016 level, which was the country’s highest monthly production in almost 30 years—11.247 million bpd.

Commenting on the deal in which Russia leads the non-OPEC producers part of the pact, Novak said today that all countries in the agreement are in favor of continuing some form of cooperation to bring the oil market back to balance.

“I did not hear from a single minister who was against such cooperation,” TASS quoted Novak as saying.
However, the Russian energy ministry has not received proposals to extend the current OPEC/non-OPEC deal in its existing form through the end of the first half of 2019, Novak noted.

Referring to OPEC and allies’ plans for after the current expiry date of the cuts at the end of 2018, Novak said that some kind of cooperation could be made “indefinite”.

“If we talk about the format, we can make an indefinite agreement,” Novak said.

Last month, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said that Saudi Arabia and Russia were looking to solidify their cooperation on crude oil production for another decade or two.

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