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Friday, February 09, 2007

Total restarts Apsheron talks

02-09-2007 - Upstream onLine - French giant Total has revived talks with Azerbaijan on developing the Apsheron gas field, in the Caspian Sea, after the previous consortium fell apart due to poor drilling results. Azeri state oil player Socar said in a statement released today that it had signed a memorandum of understanding with Total over the Apsheron Block in the Caspian Sea and hoped to sign a full production sharing agreement within a year. Total and Socar were part of the group led by Chevron that failed to find commercial reserves when it drilled the first exploration well on Apsheron in 2001. Chevron decided against continuing operations after investing more than $75 million in the first well and walked out of the deal, paying Socar compensation. Socar says Apsheron gas reserves could be as high as 1 trillion cubic metres, comparable to the neighbouring giant Shah Deniz field, which is due to start pumping gas to Turkey later this year.

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