Energy minister: Romania to have a surplus of 1 bln cubic metres of natural gas next winter

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Romania will have a surplus of one billion cubic metres of natural gas next winter coming from the Black Sea, from the area where Black Sea Oil & Gas operates, Energy Minister Virgil Popescu said on Tuesday.

“Had Romania had the Black Sea natural gas … we would have been fully energy independent, we would have been a natural gas supplier even, a regional energy stability supplier. Instead, Romania has another area and it is almost ready, the area where Black Sea Oil & Gas operates. We have had discussions with them, and this spring the first gas will come out of the Black Sea, so Romania will have a surplus of one billion cubic metres next winter that will come from the Black Sea. That will further decrease Romania’s dependence on Russian gas,” the Energy minister told B1 TV private broadcaster.

Popescu announced that Romgaz will also start investing in the Caragele oil field in Buzau County, where the first gas will most likely come in 2023.

We also have onshore deposits inside the country, especially the Caragele oil field, in the Buzau area, the deep field at Caragele, where Romgaz starts investing and began drilling again now. It is a rich field there and the first gas drilled there will be in 2023. The natural gas area, which is a very sensitive area very much related to regional geopolitical games and where we focus so that we can have no more problems moving forward,” said Popescu.

As for the supply of fuels given the high prices of oil, the minister opined that Romania will not have such problems.

Romania is an oil producer, but it also imports oil from Kazakhstan. KazMunaiGaz brings its oil from Kazakhstan and we are less exposed from this point of view than other countries, because we are a country that produces both oil and natural gas and the price of oil follows world prices. I don’t think we’re going to have problems with fuel supply, I don’t think we’re going to have any. We had no problems when there was that explosion at the Petromedia refinery, when the refinery was shut down; there was no problem then. We managed to talk to the market players, to KazMunaiGaz, which imported oil, and OMV-Petrom, which brought in additional supplies and we had no problems,” said Popescu.

The Caragele field is estimated to yield about 30 billion cubic metres, and the Neptun Deep block 42-84 billion cubic metres. The estimated reserves in the Midia block, where Black Sea Oil & Gas operates, amount to approximately 20-30 billion cubic metres.

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