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    Equinor Eyes Uzbek Upstream


The Norwegian company is looking at general co-operation with the state to boost gas output as a first step.

by: Dalga Khatinoglu

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Natural Gas & LNG News, Americas, Premium, Corporate, Exploration & Production, News By Country, Uzbekistan

Equinor Eyes Uzbek Upstream

Norwegian Equinor has signed a memorandum of understanding with Uzbek state-run oil and gas company about exploration for oil and gas, Uzbekneftegaz told NGW November 14. The Uzbek company said the deal is not restricted to a specific area. “Uzbekistan is interested in attracting advanced technologies to the upstream sector to increase gas production,” the company said.

Equinor told NGW that the purpose of the meeting with Uzbekneftegaz officials was to start an initial dialogue about a co-operation on business opportunities in the country. 

Russian Lukoil is the leading foreign company developing Uzbek projects, producing 10.3bn m3 gas (its own share) during nine months of 2019, which indicates 9% growth yr/yr.

Uzbekistan expects more gas output, signing three contracts with international companies in 2019 with five more to come next year, Uzbekneftegaz reported September 26. These are with UK BP, French Total, Azeri Socar and Russia’s Rosneft and Novatek.

Uzbekneftegaz which produces 42bn m3/yr of gas, aimed to produce 4-5bn m³ more next year as well. Overall output is 63bn m³/yr.

Uzbekistan has stopped publishing energy statistics since 2013, while BP estimated its sale gas production at 56.6bn m3 in 2018, 6.1% more than 2017. Uzbekistan plans to invest $33bn in its oil and gas sectors during 2019-2025.

While Uzbekistan is a double landlocked country, most of Equinor's production and exploration activity is offshore. Norway, the Caspian and Brazil are major areas for it.