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Russia's seventh largest oil and gas producer Russneft is planning to add 15bn m3 of gas in Azerbaijan to its balance sheet reserves in 2017, according to a company filing published because of its planned IPO on the Moscow stock exchange, reported NaturalGasWorld on November 17, 2016.

Russneft said that drilling in 2015 opened a new deposit with commercial natural gas reserves of about 15bn m3 which would be added to its reserves after further deep drilling in 2017, the company said: «As a result of the construction of an appraisal well planned for drilling, the stocks will be put on the balance. According to preliminary estimates, the upper Miocene reserves could reach 15bn m3.»

It reached an agreement with Azerbaijan state Socar this year for a gas sales price of $80 per thousand m3, but does not say it discovered the gas. However Natural Gas World understands from industry sources that it was in deep layers of the Zig and Hovsan field, in the far south part of the Absheron peninsula and the sides haven't reached an agreement over price yet. 

Russneft announced November 14, 2016,  that the Gutseriev family plans to sell up to 20% of Russneft ordinary shares in an IPO by end-2016. The Gutserievs, through their Belyrian Holdings and subsidiaries, own 75% of Russneft (67% of ordinary shares); the rest is owned by Swiss trader Glencore.  

In 2014 Russneft acquired a 100% stake in Global Energy Azerbaijan (GEA) Holdings. Through its subsidiaries and joint ventures, GEA is involved in the projects engaged in the development and production of oil in Azerbaijan on the basis of production sharing agreements (PSA) signed with Socar.

Assets of RussNeft in Azerbaijan include the blocks Absheron (onshore), Binagadi, Karasu, Neftchala and Shirvan. Its 1H 2016 report says that Russneft has reduced the share in the company Kura Valley Development Company, developing the Padar field, by up to 20%.

Its Azerbaijan reserves assets amount to 11.2 million tons of oil (2P, |SPE classification) and its 2015 equity production was about 535,000 tons. 

Russneft also announced November 16, 2016, that it intends to buy Russian firm Forteinvest, which owns three oilfield assets in the Orenburg area of southern Russia, for $270mn after its IPO is concluded.

Forteinvest owns the 120,000 b/d Orsk refinery but this will not form part of its sale to Russneft.

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