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Gazprom expects to start production in Bolivia in Q1 of 2016

May 05, 2015, 14:22 UTC+3 MOSCOW

French Total is the project operator

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© ITAR-TASS/Yuri Smityuk

MOSCOW, May 5. /TASS/. Gazprom is planning to start production in Bolivia at Ipati and Aquio gas fields in the Q1 of 2016, the company said Tuesday.

French Total is the project operator.

"Currently four exploration wells with an average depth of 5,500 meters are drilled at Ipati and Aquio gas fields, a large gas field Incahuasi was discovered. The construction of the first phase of a complex gas treatment plant with a capacity of 6.5 mln cubic meters per day, as well as field gas pipeline, condensate drain line for connecting to the gas-transport system are in progress. Later we plan to increase the number of production wells and to increase the complex gas treatment plant power to 19.5 mln cubic meters per day," the company said.

The company also noted that the Bolivian Yacimientos Petroliferos Fiscales Bolivianos and Gazprom International in late 2014 intensified the negotiations process on the expansion of cooperation. In particular, the Bolivian side is very interested in attracting Gazprom International in new projects for exploration and development of hydrocarbon fields in Bolivia. And Gazprom International is invited to act not only as one of the participants, but also as the operator for new projects.

As TASS reported earlier in April, Gazprom was going to continue the development of oil and gas fields in Bolivia in cooperation with France's Total, the Russian gas giant said on Thursday after the meeting between Gazprom’s CEO Alexei Miller and Total’s President Patric Pouyanne.

Work is currently underway at Ipati and Aquio blocks to prepare wells and associated infrastructure for the beginning of commercial production in 2016, the company said.

The joint exploration project of hydrocarbon pools is implemented on the Azero block. "According to exploration data, Northern Inkawasi and Ilinchupa appear to be the most promising targets on the contracted area," Gazprom said. "Considering the natural gas consumption growth in Bolivia, the parties underscore prospects of exploring new area in the region," the Russian company said.

Bolivia’s natural gas reserves are the third largest in Latin America after Venezuela and Trinindad and Tobago. Proved reserves of the natural gas in Bolivia are around 296 bln cubic meters.

Gazprom acquired the stake in Ipati and Aquio Blocks under the farmout agreement with Total in 2010. The joint exploration agreement for the Azero block was signed in 2008.

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