Buenos Aires. The German crude oil and natural gas producer Wintershall is continuing to expand its international activities. The company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of BASF SE, remains on growth course despite the general economic downturn. “Following on from the significant increases in production over the last few years, we are now aiming to expand production of crude oil and natural gas to over 140 million barrels of oil equivalent by 2010”, Dr. Rainer Seele, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of Wintershall Holding AG, underlined at the start of the World Gas Conference in Buenos Aires. This represents a rise of eight percent compared to production in 2008, which reached 130 million barrels of oil equivalent. “It is primarily our activities in Russia that are driving up production at the moment. For example, we have already reached plateau production in the Yuzhno Russkoye field sooner than planned. All 142 production wells are now in operation there”, Dr. Seele explained. The second project, production from the deep-lying Achimov Formation, is proceeding very well. “The first six wells are already producing despite the fact that the deposit is difficult to develop. This is a great success for German-Russian cooperation”, Dr. Seele continued. As well as boosting production in Russia, Wintershall has also stepped up its activities in the North Sea. The company discovered a significant reserve off the coast of Norway with the first exploration well following the acquisition of Revus Energy ASA. With 55 licenses overall, Wintershall is now the fourth-largest license holder in Norway, and has thus laid the foundations for further growth. In addition, the company is also planning to proceed with new projects in the Middle East.
In Argentina, which is this year hosting the World Gas Conference, which is the world’s most important get-together for the gas industry, Wintershall is one of the biggest producers in the country; it has an annual production of about 25 million barrels of oil equivalent there and participating interests in 15 oil and gas fields. Wintershall also operates the southernmost natural gas platform in the world off the coast of Tierra del Fuego together with TOTAL Austral S.A. and Pan American Energy L.L.C. The consortium aims to produce a total of around 56 billion cubic meters of natural gas, 3.4 million tons of condensate and 2.4 million tons of LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) from the Carina and Aries fields by 2027. The first production wells are currently being drilled in the Central-West field of the Aguada Pichana concession, where there is a tight-gas deposit. “In Argentina Wintershall is focusing on searching for new natural gas and crude oil reserves and on applying our tight gas expertise”, Dr. Seele explained. In the southern continent Wintershall explores both in regions that have not yet been geologically developed, such as the Cañadón Asfalto Basin in central Argentina,
and in regions such as the Neuquén Basin, where hydrocarbons have already been discovered and are being produced. Wintershall concentrates there primarily on new resources in