Light Crude Oil Deposits Discovered in Atyrau Region of Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan plans to increase oil production by 0.9% in 2018

On Tuesday, January 24, the Energy Ministry of Kazakhstan reported of a finding of a light crude oil and natural gas deposit. The deposit has been named Ansagan after the geological structure of the same name, reports with reference to Economic Calendar. Ansagan is located in the Atyrau region in western Kazakhstan north of Caspian Sea.

“Reserves are expected to be promising and there will be an extensive effort aimed at confirming the current estimate of the deposit,” says the Ministry’s statement. If Ansagan’s potential is confirmed, the broader outlook for the region will be reevaluated, which would lead to a more active exploration.

According to the Energy Ministry, Almex Plus LLC received exploration rights in February, 2014. Following the discovery, the confirmation of the current Ansagan finding is planned, followed by an expansion of exploration activity across all of the contracted territory, which is spread across nearly 1,000 square miles in the Atyrau and Mangystau regions.

Kazakhstan is among the countries outside of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) that agreed to participate in the combined OPEC/non-OPEC crude oil production cut in December 2016, despite the fact that its highly regarded offshore Kashagan oilfield reached commercial production just months before the deal between oil producers was achieved. Kazakhstan’s undertaken cut in production will be made at the expense of smaller, naturally-decaying fields, while such major projects as Kashagan and Tengiz will continue as planned.

According to Saudi Arabia’s Oil Minister Al-Falih, it is currently not expected that the production cut deal will be extended beyond its initially agreed six-month period that’s due to end in July 2017. Therefore, any additions to Kazakhstan’s proven oil reserves are welcomed at the current stage, as the country is looking to expend its crude output and enter the list of the world’s top-10 oil exporting countries in the coming years.