Rosneft, Russia’s top oil company, has offered a stake in an East Siberian oil producer to China’s National Petroleum Corp of up to 30%. The stake is in oil firm Taas-Yuryakh, in which it already owns 35% and is bidding for the rest of the company.
Earlier this year, Rosneft agreed to more than double its oil supplies to China from the current 300,000 barrels per day it ships with the first phase of East Siberia – Pacific Ocean pipeline.
Russia, the world's top oil producer, has until now been reluctant to cede a significant share of its oil riches to China – the world's second largest consumer – with Rosneft preferring to sign long-term supply deals backed by multi-billion-dollar loans.
But Rosneft, which in March acquired Anglo-Russian oil firm TNK-BP for $55 billion, needs to increase its upstream base to honour its pledge to increase sales to China.
Taas-Yuryakh initially plans to produce up to 1 million tonnes a year (20,000 barrels per day) from its East Siberian Srednebotuobinskoye field and aims to increase output to 6.15 million tonnes (120,000 bpd) by 2016.
The field, with reserves of almost 1 billion barrels, is connected to the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean trunk by a 160 km pipeline.