Kazakhstan closes oil fields to Italian Eni company

Kazakhstan closed the country's oil fields to production by the Italian energy firm Eni due to a breach of environmental obligations, Environment Minister Nurlan Iskakov said in the capital Astana on Monday.

Kazakhstan closes oil fields to Italian Eni company

Kazakhstan closed the country's oil fields to production by the Italian energy firm Eni due to a breach of environmental obligations, Environment Minister Nurlan Iskakov said in the capital Astana on Monday.

According to the Interfax news agency, the Kazakh government has forced a three-month pause on the Kashagan project.

Iskakov had previously warned that the country was legally obliged to withdraw the company's development licence to the Kashagan deposits in order to prevent irreparable damage to the environment.

Eni leads an international consortium of oil producers that includes Total, ExxonMobil and Royal Dutch/Shell each with 18.52-per- cent stake, ConocoPhillips with 9.26 per cent, and Inpex and the state-owned Kazakh firm KazMunaiGaz with 8.33 per cent each.

Eni had postponed the oil development originally planned for 2005 several times, with project costs rising from 57 billion to 136 billion dollars.

Kazakhstan's Economic Minister Bachyt Sultanov claimed that the postponements had cost the state "a substantial sum."

The Kashagan field in the Kazakh sector of the Caspian Sea contains potentially up to 38 billion barrels of oil, with experts estimating that the firm could reasonably produce about 9 billion barrels.

DPA

Last Mod: 27 Ağustos 2007, 15:20
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