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ConocoPhillips, Gazprom studying development of Shtokman gas field

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Dec. 22 -- ConocoPhillips signed a memorandum of understanding with OAO Gazprom outlining how the companies will jointly study development of giant Shtokman gas field in the Russian area of the Barents Sea.

Reportedly one of the largest gas fields in the world, Shtokman lies in the Arctic about 500 km from Murmansk. Russia plans to develop Shtokman with an LNG terminal at Murmansk and export the LNG to the US (OGJ, Aug. 25, 2003, p. 100).

The project has been on hold since 1992 because of financial, legal, and technical problems associated with development in the hostile environment.

Shtokman field, discovered in 1988, is 350 miles off the northwest coast of Russia in 1,000 ft of water. Full development is expected to require three or four phases.

Gazprom previously signed agreements with other companies, including Norsk Hydro (OGJ Online, June 4, 2004).

Earlier this year, ConocoPhillips announced plans to buy 7.59% of OAO Lukoil for $1.99 billion and join the Russian company in a strategic alliance that will allow it to increase the interest to 20% (OGJ Online, Sept. 29, 2004).

ConocoPhillips and Lukoil also created a joint venture to develop fields in northern Russia's Timan-Pechora oil and gas province and announced an intention to jointly seek the right to develop giant West Qurna oil field in Iraq.

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