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ANRM: the process of entering the development and exploitation phase for the gas in the Black Sea must be accelerated


The process of entering the phase of development and exploitation of

the gas in the Black Sea must be accelerated, as after 2030 the value of

the deposits is significantly reduced and they will not be commercially

worthy, stated on Tuesday in a conference Sorin Calin Gal, the general

manager of the National Agency for Mineral Resources (ANRM).


The Neptun project, everybody knows that Exxon decided to withdraw

from Romania and not only from Romania. Exxon is in a campaign of

assets selling in the whole world. They concentrated on some deposits

in the western area of Africa and in the rest they sold and are selling

assets in the North Sea, the Black Sea, the Mediterranean and probably

they will concentrate on other areas. The process in undergoing.


Romgaz had an offer and negotiates to acquire the company

ExxonMobil Bahamas which is the holder of 50% shares in the

agreement on Neptun Deep. Together with OMV Petrom which is 50%,

the other partner in the project, as the deadline is March 2022 when they

have to state the beginning of the development phase of the commercial

deposit. The people in Exxon came with a request to postpone this

deadline, initially for five years, then three years and at the present

moment there are negotiations. I said that as long as you are in a

negotiation to leave an oil agreement, I can’t say what OMV Petrom is

going to decide with the new partner, be it Romgaz or somebody else’

Gal said.


From the discussions held with ExxonMobil, with OMV Petrom, with

Lukoil, Romgaz and all the partners in the Black Sea, due to the

apparition of Green Deal and the present situation on the international

market of gas, I consider and, probably the government will have the

same opinion, that the process must be accelerated to get into the

development phase of the gas, as after 2030 the value of the deposits is

significantly reduced, the demand for oil and natural gas is reduced and

it will not be commercially worthy. Investments are very big in the

offshore area. Only for the project Neptun we are talkin about at least

3.7- 4 billion dollars for the development of the deposit and for its

exploitation’ the ANRM representative said.


According to Gal, ‘nobody must be worried that we will not have oil or

gas’ but the issue is that, over 9 -10 years, ‘probably cars with thermic

engine will disappear and the demand for oil will diminish’ .


Some commercial deposits in Romania have been exploited for 160

years. There are wells which were dug one hundred years ago and they

are working. The deposits, stated by the companies which are listed on

the stock exchange are at a certain level, but there are deposits which

have a certain development. We have deposits with Romgaz which have as economic deadline 2071. On the other hand, due to the new technologies and the research in the domain, there are many methods to increase the recovery factor, fact which extends the life span of a deposit. So, nobody needs to worry about not having oil or gas. The

issue is that in nine to ten years cars with thermic engine may disappear

and the demand for oil will diminish. On the other hand, cheapest oil will

be profitable’ Sorin Calin Gal said.


According to the general manager of ANRM, the project Midia-Pelican of

Black Sea Oil &Gas in under development, and the effective production

of natural gas is going to start in December this year.


Four years ago, at a conference we offered the first data about the 200

billion cubic metres in the Black Sea and we said that, the Romanian

state will have to do what it is necessary to be able, as soon as possible,

to get to the exploitation of the gas. Time was in our favour and we have

a project undergoing today, Midia-Pelican of those at Black Sea Oil&Gas

and I hope to start in December to produce the first natural gas. The

situation of the other areas is not encouraging. Those at Lukoil dug a

well in 2019 which did not confirm a technological model initially

established and some months ago they initiated a reprocessing of 3D

seismic to get into a phase of two years to evaluate the structures and

the potentially commercial deposit in the Trident area. The other area of

Lukoil and Romgaz, they gave up in 2017 as there was no commercial

interest. Similarly, the Lukoil people, partners with Romgaz at Trident

area, are following the development of the deposit by using the existing

installations or future installations which could be built in the Neptun

area. We also consider that a joint exploitation of the two areas is more

profitable from an economic point of view, by reducing the cost for the

surface installation’ Gal said.


The Romanian National Committee of the World Council of Energy (CNR

CME) under the aegis of the ministry of energy organized between 6 –

8 September the conference – SIREN 2021 with the issue ‘The

Romanian Energy Sector – The Chance of a New Beginning’.