The Company has completed another stage of the Western Siberia – Pacific Ocean pipeline system extension, and from 1 January 2018 the volumes of crude transported via the ESPO-1 and Skovorodino – Mohe oil pipelines, has increased.
WITH A FOCUS ON CHINA
In 2018, Transneft East intends to pump more than 66 million tons of oil via the ESPO-1 pipeline system. Such an increase is caused by higher volumes of crude transported to China. In December 2017 the Chinese partners completed the works to extend the Skovorodino – Mohe – Daqing oil pipeline in their territory, and on 1 January 2018 the pipeline reached the design capacity.
The Company was able to boost the volumes transported towards China as in December 2017 it launched three oil pumping stations (PS) for ESPO-1 in Irkutsk Region: Vikhorevka PS No. 3, Yantal PS No. 6, and Ichera PS No. 9.
Prior to that, Transneft accomplished the work required to extend the Skovorodino – Mohe pipeline. Stage 4 (the final one) included construction of two 50,000 m3 tanks at Tayshet PEPS-1 that increased the tank farm capacity to 400,000 m3. The new tanks were put into operation in November 2017. The previous three stages saw upgrading of the equipment at Skovorodino PS No. 21, extension of the station’s tank farm to 500,000 m3, upgrading of the facilities at Dzhalinda pipeline metering station (PMS).
PS No. 8 and Dulisma Oil Company’s PMS receive oil from the Dulisminskoye oil and gas condensate field
By the end of the year the new stations and oil pipelines had passed all the tests required to operate in the new modes.
“In December we tested ESPO-1’s first process section Tayshet – Talakan for the delivery capacity of 49 million tonnes, and the Talakan – Skovorodino section at 80 million tonnes. This was preceded by testing the Skovorodino – Mohe oil pipeline under the design conditions of 30 million tonnes. The testing was coordinated with the Chinese side. We held a meeting in Beijing and signed the revised mutual relations regulations. Chinese professionals work side by side with our employees at the metering station, taking part in the metering operations,” Boris Yablonsky, Deputy Director General for Commodity and Transport Operations at Transneft East, said.
It is planned to transport 28.3 million tons of oil to China this year, boosting the volumes to 30 million tonnes from 2019. It is a dramatic increase, considering that in 2017 the pipeline pumped 16.5 million tonnes of crude.
Today, the ESPO-1 PS is one of the most demanded crude transportation routes in the Russian oil industry. Crude production is going up in Eastern Siberia, and oil majors are not merely developing the “Soviet heritage,” but are exploring new fields and oil pools.
Nowadays, ESPO-1 receives crude from seven oil majors operating in various fields of Eastern Siberia.
“Over the past few years the share of Eastern Siberian oil producers in the crude flow transported via ESPO-1 has been constantly increasing; now, the shares of Eastern Siberian and Western Siberian crude are almost equal. If in 2010 we received some 5.8 million tons directly from oil producers, now this figure is approaching 30 million tons. Do not forget the Kuyumba – Tayshet oil pipeline which we use to transfer crude to ESPO from the fields in the north of Krasnoyarsk Region. The volumes of hydrocarbon production have also been growing there, even though at a lower rate,” Boris Yablonsky said.
So, the ESPO oil pipeline will not encounter a slump in demand in the near future. Transneft continues to extend the pipeline to meet that demand.