Wednesday, September 10, 2008
GdF Suez eyes Shtokman gravy train
27 August, 2008 - Upstream OnLine - France's GdF Suez is interested in marketing gas from the Shtokman project in the remote Barents Sea when it comes onstream, a senior executive said today. "Shtokman is really important for EU, Europe and we are very interested in marketing of gas from Shtokman," Jean-Francios Cirelli, the vice chairman and president of GDF Suez told the ONS conference in Stavanger. He also said political support would be essential for new projects to come on stream. "We know all projects will not succeed without strong political support from our government and the EU," he said. Relations between the West and Russia have hit new lows after Moscow's military foray into Georgia, following a gradual cooling over years due in part to friction with foreign investors, seen by analysts as aimed at installing Russian control over energy projects, wrote Reuters. Gazprom has a 51% stake in Shtokman while Norway's StatoilHydro has 24% and France's Total 25%. The shareholders are drafting the field's development plan and are due to make a final investment decision in the second half of 2009. In the first phase due on stream in 2013, Shtokman is expected to produce 11 billion cubic metres of gas per year.