Russia Bets on Shale Oil to Defend Its Spot as Top Producer of Crude

29 Dec 2017   Russia, Shale Oil

Companies like Gazprom Neft are leading Moscow’s drive to replicate the U.S. shale boom at the ‘Red Lenin’ oil field. KRASNOLENINSKOYE OIL FIELD, Russia—This western Siberian oil field is called “Red Lenin,” but its reserves have a distinctly American ring: shale. The future of the Russian oil industry could lie in the vast Bazhenov shale formation, the largest in the world. Russia has become the biggest global producer of crude oil with almost no contribution from shale, a sometimes technically difficult and expensive resource to pump. Only Americans have really gotten shale right so far, but the Kremlin is taking the first steps to unlock Russia’s potential. Companies like PAO Gazprom Neft GZPFY -1.78% are leading Moscow’s drive to replicate the U.S. shale boom, experimenting with a uniquely Russian, state-controlled approach to fracking that contrasts with the free-for-all among independent producers in Texas and North Dakota. “The Bazhenov is […]

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