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Sakhalin-1 to pump oil in Oct

Vladimir Radyuhin

Moscow , Aug. 11

THE Sakhalin-1 oil and gas project, in which ONGC-Videsh Ltd (OVL) has equity, will begin production on October 1, a Russian partner company said.

"The project is going on schedule and will start pumping oil and gas on October 1," said the President of the state oil firm Rosneft, Mr Sergei Bogdanchikov.

India joined the project in 2001 when OVL acquired a 20-per cent equity stake from two Rosneft subsidiaries. OVL will invest nearly $3 billion in Sakhalin-1, which makes it India's biggest foreign investment. ExxonMobil with 30 per cent of the equity is the project operator.

The $12-billion offshore Sakhalin-1 project will produce 90,000 tonnes (about 660,000 barrels of crude by the end of 2005), and is scheduled to reach peak production of 250,000 barrels a day by the end of 2006.

The project is estimated to yield about 307 million tonnes (2.3 billion barrels) of oil and 485 billion cubic metres of natural gas.

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