19 Apr 2023 17:00

Bill on liberalizing LNG exports to permit exporting from 36 Rosneft fields

MOSCOW. April 19 (Interfax) - The bill on permitting companies with state participation to export natural and associated gas in liquefied form to users of subsoil plots on land, wholly or partially located north of 67 degrees northern latitude, will apply to 36 fields of Rosneft in the Krasnoyarsk Territory, and in the Nenets and Yamal-Nenets districts, Russian Deputy Energy Minister Anastasia Bondarenko said.

Presenting the relevant government bill at the State Duma Energy Committee, she said it was possible to export gas in the form of LNG from all the fields of Gazprom and its 100% subsidiaries, "that's about 190 fields."

Bondarenko said that following amendments to the Law on Gas Exports in 2012-2013, Rosneft, Gazprom Export and Novatek's Yamal LNG, Arctic LNG 2, Arctic LNG 1 and Arctic LNG 3 also received the right to export LNG, as did Gazprom Gas Oil Product Holding for low-tonnage LNG. Licenses are issued by the Energy Ministry.

The right is granted to legal entities with a government stake of more than 50%, which are subsoil developers in internal sea waters, the territorial sea, the continental shelf of the Russian Federation and the Black Sea and Sea of Azov. "As per this criterion, the right to export LNG belongs to Rosneft and its subsidiaries - about 45 licensed areas," the deputy minister said.

Bondarenko said gas was already being exported in the form of LNG from Yamal LNG, Novatek subsidiary Cryogas-Vysotsk, the Gazprom-controlled Sakhalin-2 and from the Gazprom LNG Portovaya LLC plant at Portovaya compressor station.

"This bill extends the list of three categories of entities and provides for the granting the right to export, essentially, to Rosneft, because the list of fields that now belong to Rosneft is expanding. These are about 36 fields located in the Krasnoyarsk Territory, in the Nenets and Yamalo- Nenets autonomous districts. Of course, the bill will make it possible to monetize those gas reserves that are a long distance from the unified gas supply system," Bondarenko said.

She said that some projects were at a fairly advanced stage, and some were still on paper, but in any case, the bill is aimed at achieving the LNG production target set by the Russian Energy Strategy. The expansion of the list of LNG exporting companies will give impetus to the development of other industries, such as shipbuilding, she said.

The chairman of the State Duma Energy Committee, Pavel Zavalny, said this concerned fields that are difficult to connect to a single gas supply system. Theoretically, it is possible, but this is "a matter of necessity, especially against the backdrop of declining exports to Europe." "Last year, the exports fell by about 90 billion cubic meters, and this year we can expect a decrease of about 130 billion cubic meters [also compared with 2021]," he said.

Zavalny said gas production capacity already in place would supply gas to European Russia and the Urals for many years to come, so there are no risks attached to expanding the list of LNG exporters.

The first reading of the bill is due on May 16.

The bill would amend articles 2 and 3 of the Law on Gas Exports. ""It would grant the exclusive right to export LNG to users of subsoil areas on land, fully or partially located north of the 67th degree of northern latitude, in terms of natural gas in liquefied state, produced from natural gas and (or) oil (associated) gas produced in the above subsoil areas, and the use of LNG in bunkering sea and river vessels carrying cargo for export," the government press office has said.

The right to export LNG is granted only to subsoil users in the charter capital of which the Russian Federation owns directly or indirectly more than 50% of the total number of votes.