July 15, 2012
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№ 6 (June 2012)

Gazprom Plans to Build it's Own "Skolkovo"

Gazprom has more and more frequently been encountering tight reserves and this has had a significant impact on the company's position among its competitors (including both other companies and gas producing countries).

By Lada Ponomareva

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To alleviate this problem, the Russian gas monopolist has decided to use "brains" in the literal sense: the company is planning to build its own technopark, much like the vaunted Russian Skolkovo center. Gazprom's version will be smaller and have the main objective of developing modern technologies for production and gas transportation which it can use and which can be used in similar industries.

According to Russian media reports, the centre is likely to be built near Troitsk in Moscow Region.

Gazprom alreaady has a number of scientific centers, but has not yet built a dedicated campus. Instead the gas giant has left each individual center to develop its own specific solutions.

The main question now will be to see if the goals being pursued by Gazprom in creating its own Skolkovo will truly result in new science and products which could help both the company and make a clear statement about Russia's scientific potential or end up as a "one-day innovation" tasked merely with leaving behind competitors. This concern was expressed by Oleg Zhilin, the president of the Russian gas society in commentary to the Russian newspaper Izvestiya.

The issue of increasing profitability for gas and oil projects is acute today not only in Russia, but across the globe as more and more reserves are tight or unconventional or imbued with high risk in production.
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