Chevron Corp. and its partners in the Tengiz oil field in Kazakhstan “will proceed with the development of its Future Growth and Wellhead Pressure Management Project (FGP-WPMP), which will increase crude oil production” from the field “by about 260,000 barrels per day,” the San Ramon, California, company announced Tuesday. The expansion will cost $36.8 billion, according to current estimates by Chevron, and will increase the field’s “total production to approximately 1 million barrels of oil equivalent per day.”
Tengizchevroil (TCO), the joint venture that owns and operates the Tengiz field, is 50 percent-owned by Chevron. Another 25 percent is owned by ExxonMobil Corp., headquartered in Irving, Texas; Kazakhstan’s state-owned energy company KazMunayGas owns 20 percent; and the remaining 5 percent is owned by a subsidiary of Russia’s Lukoil.
Of the total estimated expansion cost, $27.1 billion will be spent on facilities, $3.5 billion is earmarked for wells and about twice that amount, $6.2 billion would go toward contingency and escalation measures, according to Chevron’s statement.
Providing further details of the expansion project, the statement said: “WPMP maximizes the value of existing TCO facilities by extending the production plateau and keeping existing plants producing at full capacity. FGP will use state-of-the-art sour gas injection technology, successfully developed and proven during TCO’s previous expansion in 2008, to enhance oil recovery. First oil is planned for 2022.”
The announced investment is the biggest in the oil industry since crude prices began falling mid-2014. At the time, crude oil was trading close to $115 a barrel, then fell to about $27 in January 2016 but has risen since to hover near the $50 level the last six weeks (except the Brexit shock that sent it close to $47 a week ago).
Since 1993, the Tengiz oil field has generated about $70 billion in revenue and $40 billion in profits for Chevron, according to analyst estimates cited in the Wall Street Journal.
Chevron also has stakes in the Karachaganak oil field in Kazakhstan and the 935-mile pipeline to carry crude oil from the Tengiz field to the Russian city of Novorossiysk on the Black Sea coast.