The Americans sell a future competitor of “Gazprom” in Europe

Американцы продают будущего конкурента «Газпрома» в Европе

The largest public oil and gas Corporation in the world ExxonMobil is selling off assets in Europe, Asia and Africa by $ 25 billion to invest in several major projects. In Romania for sale the Americans will put a 50 percent share in the project of development of deposits of deepwater block “Neptune”. Discovered in the Black sea gas reserves enable to fully provide gas to Romania itself, and to start supplying gas to neighboring European countries, which today most of the fuel received from Russia.

Executive Director of “Romgaz” Adrian Volintiru told the publication that ExxonMobil has hired consultants to exit the Neptune project, and they have invited Romanian state-owned company to buy out the Americans. Today ExxonMobil divides the project of development of deepwater fields in the Black sea in half with Romanian OMV Petrom, controlled by Austria’s OMV. “Romgaz” at the same time, said Adrian Volintiru, is interested only in a small proportion of — 15-20%. Because, according to Romanian standards, the project is very expensive.As reported in ExxonMobil, the Corporation invested in the search and discovery of deposits in the Romanian sector of the Black sea $ 750 million Apparently, and its share is estimated at that amount. According to Reuters, however, the Americans gave their share of the $ 250 million, However, for future field construction and start of production of necessary investments in $ 3 billion, which was planned to be split between ExxonMobil and OMV Petrom. Thus, even the proportion of 15-20% will require a “Romgaz” investments of at least $ 500 million With all the revenues of Ragusa in 2018 amounted to $ 1.15 billion and the company has already a lot of investment obligations.

So, “Romgaz” participates in the development of another black sea block, “Trident”, together with “LUKOIL”, is the equity holder of the Greek LNG terminal in Alexandroupolis and builds gas power plant “Mintia”.

“We are interested, but it is a multi-step process which we must pass to make the final decision,” said Executive Director of “Romgaz” Adrian Volintiru.

Updated reserves discovered in the deepwater block Neptun deposits exceed 200 billion cubic meters, said the publication Romania-insider. Annual production is estimated at 6.3 billion cubic meters. A little more than 1 billion cubic meters will be enough to cover all the needs of Romania’s own gas, and the rest can be sold for export. Thus, the American Exxon Mobil signed with Hungary the document on strategic partnership in order that Hungary could get from the fields in the Black sea 4.4 billion cubic meters a year.

Американцы продают будущего конкурента «Газпрома» в Европе

Illustration: decision on the development of new oil fields ExxonMobil and OMV Petrom had to take a year ago. However, in 2018, the Romanian Parliament adopted a law limiting gas exports and installs additional tax on income if the selling price of gas above 92,5 euros per thousand cubic meters. A similar move by the legislators has resulted in the project “Neptune” stopped, and Bucharest was forced to take to go back down. In the autumn the Ministry of energy of Romania put up for public comment amendments to the law which significantly reduce restrictions, although not completely.Deepwater gas production is an expensive project in terms of cost of production, however, the Romanian project attractive infrastructure proximity and consumers. Therefore, for the American share in the black sea project may be a lot of wishing.

However, the Romanian authorities expect that it will get Romanian state-owned companies. As soon as rumors of the sale, the Minister of economy, energy and entrepreneurship of the country’s Virgil Popescu said that “Romgaz” should evaluate their participation. As reported by Romania-insider, in that agreed with him even a member of the opposition Democratic party and Chairman of the parliamentary Committee on industry Iulian Iancu. The Minister, according to Agerpres, said he koordiniruyutsya with the management of “Romgaz” how high the possibility of buying American shares in the project, which will become the new competitor of “Gazprom” in Central and Eastern Europe.

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