Russians offshore reserves to be Gazprom, Rosneft preserve

In a bid to control foreign ownership of Russian offshore oil and gas reserves, the Russian government has state-controlled Gazprom and Rosneft control of the country's continental shelf.

Gazprom and Rosneft will receive 50-per cent control each of Russia's continental shelf and would then have wide powers to assign projects based on financial, environmental and technological parametres.

According to the ministry of natural resources' estimates, extraction of crude oil from the shelf will reach 10 million tonnes per year by 2010 and 95 million tonnes by 2020, Russian daily Vedomosti reported.

Natural gas extraction is expected to reach 30-billion cubic metres by 2010 and 320- billion cubic metres by 2020. Work on developing the vast Shtokman reserves off the coast of Northern Russia will commence in the next few years.