CHRONICLE OF THE ERA OF POWER AND HAPPINESS - YEAR 2020

10:18 09.03.2021 2213

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Oil and gas complex

 The oil and gas industry is the leading sector of the national economy, that plays a significant role in the programs of the country's socio-economic development on an innovative basis, approved by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, and expanding its export opportunities.

 Much attention is paid to strengthening international cooperation in the energy sector, as the most important factor in the successful implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Agenda for the period up to 2030.  The constructive initiatives of our country aimed at forming a new architecture of global energy security enjoy wide support in the world.

 “Possessing gigantic world reserves of natural gas, Turkmenistan is a consistent supporter of fair and equitable access to the planet's energy resources.  One of the ways to achieve this goal is to create a reliable and stable system of energy flows that takes into account the interests of all participants”, - President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized at the International Conference "Policy of Neutrality and Its Importance in Ensuring International Peace, Security and Sustainable Development", dedicated to the 25th  anniversary of the neutral status of the Motherland.

 The international scientific and practical conference "Stable cooperation in the energy sector is the most important condition for global development" held in December was timed to the 25th anniversary of Turkmenistan's neutrality.  The forum, organized by the State Concerns «Turkmengas» and «Turkmennebit», was attended by heads and leading specialists of oil and gas companies, representatives of relevant ministries and departments, international organizations and financial institutions, diplomatic and scientific circles, and the media from 32 countries.  Due to the restrictions imposed on international travel in the world, many foreign delegates joined the discussions by the digital communication system.

 Substantively discussed topics such as the role of natural gas in economic recovery after COVID-19 and in the transition to sustainable energy, transnational pipelines are key elements of sustainable development and energy security.  Ranking the fourth in the world in terms of natural gas reserves, Turkmenistan consistently promotes the idea of ​​integrating the energy markets of Europe and Asia.  In this area, large projects are being successfully implemented, that is important both from the point of view of enhancing interstate trade and economic relations, and in the context of solving global problems in the field of environmental protection, the transition to the use of clean energy.

 An illustrative example of this is the Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan-China gas pipeline, which has been operating steadily for over 11 years.  Currently, work continues to strengthen the resource base and develop the infrastructure of the transnational highway.  So, in 2020, on the right bank of the Amu Darya river, the construction of production facilities of three fields - "West Joramergen", "Gokmiyar" and "Dashrabat" began.  These fields are located in the eastern part of the Bagtyyarlyk contract area, the exploration, construction and development of which under the Production Sharing Agreement is carried out by the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC).

Also, construction work was completed at a new gas compressor station prepared for commissioning at the Malay field, where one of the branches of the Turkmenistan-China gas pipeline starts.  The complex equipped with modern technological equipment and, having a capacity of 30 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year, is fully automated.  It is designed to increase the pressure of gas produced at the Malay, Dovletabat and Galkynysh fields.  This project, aimed at ensuring stable and reliable export supplies of natural gas, was implemented by the SC «Turkmengas» together with Petro Gas LLP (Great Britain).

 As Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasizes, the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project is of great geopolitical and geo-economic importance.  The new energy pipeline is designed not only to ensure long-term supplies of Turkmen gas to the largest countries of South Asia, but also to become a powerful incentive for further socio-economic development of the entire region, strengthening peace, stability and security here.

 In addition to certain volumes of gas, our southern neighbor will receive substantial commercial benefits for the transit of Turkmen energy resources through its territory.  This project consists of two stages - the first of them will provide free gas flow into the pipeline from 5 to 6 billion cubic meters.  Then, after the construction of compressor stations, the annual capacity of TAPI will be increased to 33 billion cubic meters.  According to the Decree of the President, the delivery and installation of the SCADA telemechanics, control and communication system, as well as a set of equipment for the gas metering station at the Turkmen section of TAPI will be carried out by Serba Dinamik Sdn.Bhd (Malaysia).

 In September 2020, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the SC «Turkmengas», TAPI Pipeline Limited and Afgan Gaz Enterprise to create and develop a natural gas market in Afghanistan.  The useful experience gained during the implementation of such mega-projects can be used to further expand the gas transportation infrastructure, for example, through the construction of the Trans-Caspian pipeline.  The European Commission has included this gas pipeline in the list of priority energy projects of the European Union.

 Continuing the topic, we note that at present, gas is being supplied to the Russian Federation via the Central Asia-Center gas pipeline within the framework of a five-year contract concluded with Gazprom for the purchase of natural gas from the SC «Turkmengas».  In December 2020, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov approved the Program for the Development of Energy Diplomacy of Turkmenistan for 2021-2025, which identifies key areas of cooperation with specialized UN agencies, the International Energy Agency, the Energy Charter Secretariat and other relevant structures.

 Along with exports, the most important task of the fuel and energy complex is to meet the growing domestic demand for energy resources, which is due to the dynamic rates of development of the leading sectors of the national economy, including the oil and gas, chemical, electric power, construction industry, etc.

In accordance with the economic strategy of the leader of the nation, focused on diversifying the entire national economic complex, increasing the volume and expanding the range of products making a in the country, modern industrial giants specializing in the deep processing of hydrocarbon raw materials have been commissioned in recent years.

 In particular, this is a polymer plant in Kiyanly, which produces high-density polyethylene and polypropylene of various grades, as well as the world's first plant for the production of synthetic gasoline from natural gas in Ahal region, built with the participation of leading companies and banks of Japan and the Republic of Korea.

 The demand for the products of these modern gas chemical complexes is growing, and the geography of its export is expanding.  Thus, in the year under review, sales of various grades of polyethylene through the State Commodity and Raw Materials Exchange of Turkmenistan increased more than threefold.  Representatives of foreign business circles purchased this polymer, including for deliveries to Russia, Turkey, China, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, other countries of Southeast Asia, as well as the CIS.

 For the first time, ECO-93 gasoline began to be exhibited at the Uzbek Republican Commodity and Raw Materials Exchange and was also exported to Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Great Britain, Georgia, Denmark and Russia.  The growth in demand for synthetic motor fuels made from natural gas is driven by its environmental performance.  As you know, with regular refueling with ECO-93 gasoline, that complies with the Euro-5 environmental standard, less carbon deposits are formed in the engine, which doubles its service life, and harmful emissions into the atmosphere are also reduced.

 Within the framework of the International Exhibition dedicated to the 25th anniversary of Turkmenistan's neutrality, the SC «Turkmengas» signed contracts for the sale of large batches of polymer products with AFFINIQUE TRADING LLC (UAE), TransHim and Kartli (Russian Federation), MARMARA POLIMER  VE TEKSTIL TICARET ANONIM SIRKETI "(Turkey).  Similar contracts were signed by the Turkmenbashi complex of oil refineries (TCOR), including with Fawadd Saddiqui Group of Companes Ltd (Afghanistan) - for the sale of A-80 and A-92 motor gasoline, low-sulfur fuel oil - with Alkagesta Ltd (Malta).

 It should be emphasized that increasing the production capacity of the TCOR is a priority. Today, thanks to the reconstruction and technical re-equipment of the flagship of the Turkmen petrochemistry, the complex accounts for a quarter of the volume of industrial products made in the country.  Its main assortment is high-octane unleaded motor gasolines, aviation, lighting and technical kerosene, liquefied petroleum gas, various types of diesel fuel, technical lubricating oils and polypropylene, as well as electrode calcined coke, road and construction bitumen, etc.

 A significant event in 2020 was the ceremony of laying two gas turbine power units with a design capacity of 70 Megawatt/hour at the TCOR, which took place in September with the participation of Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.  The construction of these facilities was entrusted to the Çalik Enerji company from Turkey.  In addition, two main electrical substations of the TCOR will be modernized, designed to reduce the voltage of energy and distribute it to consumers.  According to the Decree of the head of the , the corresponding contract was concluded with the company "INVEST Enterprises Limited" (China) and with the private enterprise "Azap".

 These projects are designed to ensure a reliable supply of electricity to existing and new facilities under construction at TCOR.  One of them is a delayed coking and tar deasphalting unit, which is currently under construction.

 The main objective of the project carried out by the consortium of companies WTL FZE (OAE) and Westport Trading Europe Limited (USA) is the processing of heavy residues of tar and fuel oil.  The commissioning of the unit, along with an increase in the depth of oil refining, will increase the production of liquefied gas, gasoline, diesel fuel and petroleum coke, as well as create additional jobs.

On the instructions of the President, a tender is being held to develop a feasibility study for the "Conceptual strategy for the development of the Turkmenbashi complex of oil refineries and the Seydi oil refinery."  The possibilities of the TCOR and SOR will be analyzed in detail, promising directions for their further development, as well as the optimal range of petroleum products, taking into account modern requirements and demand in world markets, will be determined.

 In particular, it is planned to build new technological facilities at the TCOR and SOR, that will get the depth of oil refining to over 90 percent.  Among them is a complex of installations for hydrotreating diesel fractions and gasoline, catalytic cracking and coking with a hydrogen production unit;  unit for catalytic cracking of heavy residues of oil refining products, unit for the production of high-quality base technical oils.

 The program for the development of the oil and gas industry of Turkmenistan until 2030 also provides for the construction of the second stage of an enterprise for the production of synthetic gasoline in Akhal region, a plant for the production of methyldiethanolamine in the Balkan region and an isobutane production unit at a polymer plant in Kiyanly, plants for the production of rubber, polystyrene, polyvinyl acetate, methanol, etc.  ...

 In general, all this will help to strengthen the innovative component of the economy, to increase the share of products with high added value in exports.  It should also be noted that last year a new educational building of the Mary oil and gas secondary vocational school of the SC «Turkmengas» was commissioned.  The facility was built by order of the concern with the participation of investments from the Republic of Korea, namely the Agency for International Cooperation of this country.

 Among the urgent tasks outlined by Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov for the near future are increasing the production of natural gas and oil, strengthening the raw material base of the industry through the search and exploration of new hydrocarbon deposits, intensifying work on drilling and workover of wells, including by attracting specialized foreign  companies and investments.

 One of the most ambitious investment projects related to increasing the resource base of the industry is the industrial development of the world's largest gas field Galkynysh, the reserves of which, together with the Yashlar and Garakel fields, are estimated at 27 trillion cubic meters.  At the moment, there are over 40 wells in the operating fund of fields with a total area of ​​more than 4 thousand square kilometers, the flow rate of each of which is on average two million cubic meters of gas per day.  A complex of facilities has been put into operation here, allowing to produce 30 billion cubic meters of commercial gas per year, and at present, similar complexes of the same capacity are being built, which will provide the TAPI gas pipeline with "blue fuel".

 The construction of new exploration and production wells is also underway.  In addition, a contract was signed with the Japanese company Mitsubishi Corporation for the preparation of a preliminary technical design for a plant for the production of 10 billion cubic meters of commercial gas per year, which is planned to be built as part of the next stage of the development of the Galkynysh field.

In May 2020, the President signed a Resolution authorized the SC «Turkmengas» to conclude a contract with Turkmen Petroleum Products Trade DMCC, registered in the UAE, for the provision of services to increase the level of natural gas production at 30 wells of the Dovletabat gas field.  A gas compressor unit with an annual capacity of 2 billion cubic meters is under construction at the Zyakli Dervese gas treatment facilities serving a group of gas condensate fields in the Central Karakum Desert.  This project, carrying out by the SC «Turkmengas» together with GP Global Equipment Pte Ltd (Singapore), is scheduled to be completed in 2022.

 In addition, international tenders are being held for the selection of contractors for the turnkey construction of a new gas dehydration unit at the Deryalyk production site, the supply of equipment and the modernization of the 1st and 2nd technological lines of the Bagadzha gas processing complex.

 In the Balkan region, the stage-by-stage modernization of the Korpeje gas compressor station continues.  This industrial complex with a capacity of 4 billion cubic meters of gas per year was commissioned in 2005.  It is equipped with gas turbine units "MAN Diesel & Turbo" (Germany), which are overhauled under a contract with the SC "Turkmennebit" by the Russian company "KER-holding".

 Maintaining the level of oil and gas production in Turkmenistan is largely ensured through the use of efficient technologies and methods of field development.  In this area, cooperation with foreign companies is actively developing.  The joint productive activity of foreign and Turkmen specialists contributes to the achievement of the set goals.

 In November 2020, the President signed a Resolution authorizing the the SC «Turkmennebit» to conclude an additional agreement with the Russian PJSC «Tatneft» for the provision of services for the overhaul of 250 wells and enhanced oil recovery at the Goturdepe field. Thus, the previously signed contract has been extended until 2028.  The return on investments of Russian partners will be carried out, including due to the additionally produced oil from rehabilitated wells.

 The territory of Turkmenistan today is of great interest from the point of view of searching for new hydrocarbon deposits.  An example is the Northern Goturdepe field, where an oil reservoir was discovered at a depth of more than 4 thousand meters during geological exploration. As a part of the first stage of the investment project, implemented by the SC «Turkmennebit» together with YugNeftegaz, registered in Singapore, it is planned to build 60 exploration and production wells, including directional and horizontal ones.  Drilling of the first of them, that gave industrial oil flows in the process of testing, was completed last year.

 An international tender for the design and supply of equipment for the separation, preparation and collection of condensate at the Uzynada field is held.  Recall that earlier four wells were drilled here with a depth of more than 7 thousand meters, where industrial flows of natural gas and oil-condensate mixture were obtained.

 Simultaneously with the oilmen, exploration and prospecting work is carried out there by the subdivisions of the State Corporation "Turkmengeology", which carry out drilling of superdeep wells.  Construction of new wells continues in the Lebap region at the Tadjibay gas field, which was commissioned in December 2019.  Unlike the western region, gas accumulations there are located at shallow depths and are easily accessible in terms of development.  What is important, in their composition, as a rule, there is no hydrogen sulfide.  On behalf of the head of state, the State Corporation "Turkmengeology" is systematically expanding the exploration program designed to reveal new deposits of oil and gas and other natural resources.  additional seismic studies using more modern equipment and software are carried out on the territory of all oil and gas regions of the country.

Great prospects are associated with the fields of the Turkmen sector of the Caspian Sea, experts estimate their reserves at 12.1 billion tons of oil and condensate, as well as 6.1 trillion cubic meters of gas.  Today, the company Petronas Carigali (Turkmenistan) (Malaysia) is actively working here, which carries out exploration and production of hydrocarbons in the Block-I contract area.  At present, intensive oil and gas production is underway at the Makhtumkuli and Diyarbekir fields.  In the near future, it is planned to intensify drilling operations in the western part of the Karakol Deniz field.

 Dragon oil (Turkmenistan) Ltd, a subsidiary of Dragon oil (UAE), develops the Jeitun and Jygalybek fields, which are part of the Cheleken contract area.  A large amount of work has also been carried out here to modernize and develop the offshore oil and gas infrastructure.

 In addition, there are Production Sharing Agreements for a number of offshore blocks with Buried Hill (Cyprus), RWE and Wintershall (Germany), ARETI (headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland).  Fruitful cooperation has been established with the Italian company "Eni" (contract area "Nebitdag") and the Austrian "Mitro International" (consortium "Khazar"), which have been working in the Caspian region for many years.

 Much attention in our country is paid to the rational use of natural resources, energy efficiency, strengthening and active use of the potential of alternative energy.  To this end, together with UNDP, OSCE, and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), a National Strategy for the Development of Renewable Energy in Turkmenistan until 2030 has been developed, which identifies priority tasks in this direction.

 The International Conference "Oil and Gas of Turkmenistan" (OGT) traditionally serves as a productive platform for exchanging experience and promoting international cooperation in the energy sector.  In 2020, this large specialized forum was first held not only in a traditional format, but was also broadcast from Ashgabat online to dozens of countries.  Representatives of government agencies, relevant ministries and departments, the world's leading oil and gas, service and consulting companies, authoritative international organizations and financial structures, diplomatic and scientific circles, as well as the media, took part in the 25th anniversary conference, including by video link.

 The forum's agenda included such topical topics as global trends in the development of energy markets, the role of natural gas in the energy world after the COVID-19 pandemic, and the modernization of the Energy Charter Treaty.  Issues related to attracting investments in the offshore blocks of the Turkmen sector of the Caspian Sea, new investment opportunities in the gas and petrochemical sectors, etc. were discussed with interest. Foreign companies operating in our country made presentations of their activities.

 The key tasks of further modernization of the fuel and energy complex were considered at a working meeting held by the President on February 2, 2021, as well as at an expanded government meeting held on February 12, dedicated to the results of 2020.

 In general, the openness of Turkmenistan's foreign policy, consistently implemented by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, the country's richest natural resources, a favorable investment climate - all this creates truly unlimited opportunities for increasing international cooperation in various fields, including oil and gas.

 (TDH).

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