Gazprom Neft Puts Focus on Acquisitions

Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of gas export monopoly Gazprom, outlined on Tuesday its output strategy through 2020, aimed at more than doubling output by 2020 through acquisitions.

"Gazprom Neft will produce 90 million to 100 million tons of oil per year [1.8 million to 2 million barrels per day] by 2020 including subsidiary companies, Gazprom fields and new acquisitions both in Russia and abroad," the company said in a statement.

Gazprom Neft, which produced around 43 million tons of oil last year, flat on 2006, has been fighting declining production since former owner billionaire Roman Abramovich sold the firm, then called Sibneft, to Gazprom in 2005.

Gazprom Neft, which expects Gazprom to hand over the right to develop all of its 11 oil fields within the next two to three years, has said it plans to invest up to $4 billion per year to 2020, or around $50 billion, to boost output.

By 2020, refining will reach 70 million to 80 million tons per year, up on the 28 million tons it processed in 2007, the company said.

"In its long-term strategy, Gazprom Neft intends to develop its activity abroad," it added, saying it eyed Europe, the United States and the Asian Pacific as areas of strategic interest.

Closer to home, western Siberia will remain a key region and eastern Siberia and the northern Nenets autonomous district will also be developed.

Eni has a 20 percent stake in Gazprom Neft, which is up for either renewal or a buy-out by Gazprom next year.