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Rosneft, Exxon Mobil Sign Black Sea Oil Exploration Deal

Date: 27.01.2011

Russian energy company Rosneft and US group Exxon Mobil have signed a USD 1 B deal for creating a joint venture to explore for oil under the Black Sea.

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the agreement was signed at the World Economic Forum, which is held in Davos, Switzerland.

At a press conference, Rosneft President Eduard Yurevitch Khudaynatov said that he hopes to find about 1 billion tons of oil in the 11 200 square kilometers resource block in the waters off the Krasnodar region.

Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson said that Exxon Mobil would invest EUR 730 M in the exploration stage of the venture and that the companies would decide on future investments when the time came to begin production.

Khudaynatov said that Rosneft would take 66 % of the future production, while Exxon Mobil would have 33 %. He also noted that the two companies would develop more offshore projects together in other regions.

The deal is Exxon Mobil's biggest new venture in Russia since it agreed the landmark deals to produce oil and gas off the coast of Sakhalin in Russia's far east.

As for Rosneft, this is its second major deal within a month after it decided to expand its Arctic deal with the British oil company BP.

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