LUKoil Boost Gas, Not Oil Reserves

LUKoil, the country's largest nonstate oil producer, said Wednesday that it failed to replace the crude it pumped for the second year in a row, while boosting proven natural gas reserves.

Oil reserves fell 1.3 percent to 15.7 billion barrels, according to an audit based on Society of Petroleum Engineers standards, LUKoil said in a statement. Reserves dropped in part because of the sale of half of a Kazakh venture.

Gas reserves increased 5 percent to 790 billion cubic meters as of Jan. 1, based on an audit by Miller & Lents, the company said. LUKoil is developing gas fields in Russia and Central Asia as it seeks to expand production by more than 6 percent per year through 2016.

LUKoil rose 1.3 percent to 1,720.66 rubles in Moscow trading Wednesday.

The company replaced about 70 percent of the crude it pumped out last year with new proven reserves.

Six oil, gas and condensate fields were discovered in 2007, LUKoil said in January.