The head of Russian oil giant Rosneft said that the massive oil reserve discovered above the Arctic Circle last week was not the only promising discovery offshore of the Khara-Tumus Peninsula and that there were “some promising structures,” in the region.
Russia’s TASS News agency quoted the Rosneft head Igor Sechin as saying, “we have identified a number of promising structures there, in addition to the Central Olginskaya,” the basin in the Laptev Sea in which vast oil reserves were discovered approximately 7,550 feet below the ocean’s surface at the so-called Tsentraino-Olginskaya-1 well.
Rock samples from that location were found to contain “high oil saturation” leading to the announcement of a substantial oil reserve discovery.
Sechin has since said that the area was ripe with discoveries with Russian media giving Russian President Vladimir Putin credit for allowing the exploratory drilling to commence, which he did in a directive issued in April.
The Tsentraino-Olginskaya discovery could link to other oil fields in the region with substantial yields. The figures begin with the estimate of 9.5 billion metric tons of oil equivalent under the Laptev basin. But that forecast was made with just 28 potential oil-bearing structures discovered through seismic testing since that estimate was made. The number of promising structures with the capacity to contain oil has jumped from 28 to 114, according to TASS.
Sechin also said that foreign partners could become involved in the region’s exploratory and extraction possibilities.
Rosneft owns 28 licenses for exploratory drilling in the region, which represents a reserve capacity of about 34 billion metric tons of oil equivalent. In total, Rosneft has permits for 78 percent of the most promising regions and has plans to drill four more exploratory wells in the Laptev Sea and eight in the Kara and Barents Seas within the next four years.