The largest German oil company Wintershall (Kassel) and Gazprom are planning to set up a joint company for the exploitation of hard-to-access gas deposits in western Siberia. Reiner Zwitserloot, the chairman of Wintershall’s executive board, said that the project involves the exploitation of new deposits in western Siberia in the Urengoy-Nadym-Yamburg area. Gas, which today is transported by pipeline to Germany from Western Siberia, is extracted from a depth of 1000 metres, which does not present any particular difficulties. However, in this area, Zwitserloot said, there are reserves of gas which are more difficult to get at, but which can be reached employing the experience and high technology used by Wintershall to extract hydrocarbons in Western Europe. “Gazprom has sufficient experience in working in this location in permafrost conditions, and together we will be able to guarantee additional deliveries of natural gas for the coming decades,” Zwitserloot stressed. He added that it is planned that the joint venture would produce 10bn cubic metres of natural gas a year.
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