Gazprom Neft completes first winter sea shipments of oil from Yamal

02 June 2015

Initiated in February 2015, Gazprom Neft has now completed its first winter shipments of oil from the Novoportovskoye field, becoming the first company in the Russian oil and gas sector to despatch oil from Yamal by sea under winter conditions. Seven tankers, carrying a total 110,000 tonnes of the company’s new “Novy Port” oil, were despatched. All crude despatched during the winter season has been sold to end-users in north-western Europe, with all payments made in rubles.

Facilitating such a major commercial consignment of oil under winter conditions necessitated the development of a unique scheme for loading and transportation by tankers specially upgraded for extreme winter temperatures, towed by nuclear-powered icebreakers. Ice-breaking services for the Gazprom Neft convoy along the Northern Sea route were provided by Atomflot.

Plans for the winter transportation of oil by ocean-going tankers on a temporary basis passed an environmental impact assessment and were approved through public consultations in December 2014. Equipment used in the pumping process is fully authorised and certified by the Federal Environmental, Industrial and Nuclear Supervision Service, Rostechnadzor. Repeated specialist training exercises for the drilling of emergency rescue teams were undertaken prior to the commencement of despatch operations.

Gazprom Neft CEO Alexander Dyukov commented: “The long-term strategy of Gazprom Neft envisages increasing production at fields in the far north, both on- and offshore. These projects are under active development and, in as little as a few years, will account for a major proportion of the company’s production volumes. We continue to develop technical, logistical and marketing solutions unique to Russia’s oil and gas industry, which have not only allowed us — on schedule — to begin year-round commercial production at the Novoportovskoye field, but which are also resulting in a proportional rise in export earnings in rubles.”