By Nigar Abbasova
Last days of 2016 marked a milestone event in the oil industry of energy-rich Azerbaijan as annual production in Oil Rocks, a unique offshore deposit of the country, reached the level of 1 million tons for the first time since the country gained its independence.
The Oil Rocks Oil and Gas Production Department of Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR has managed to increase the annual oil output thanks to measures taken on stabilization and increasing output volumes at the field.
The company plans to additionally produce about 3,650 tons of oil annually thanks to the commissioning of a new well that is being currently drilled at the field, while the projected depth of the well is 1,310 meters and its daily yield is expected at the level of 10 tons.
So far, some 182.86 million tons of oil and 14.09 billion cubic meters of gas were produced from 2,211 wells at the Oil Rocks field, located to the southeast of Absheron Archipelago.
The annual output result of the department stood at 940,000 tons in 2014, 941,000 tons – in 2015. Over the last three years the department drilled and put into operation some 54 wells, while 309 geological and almost 1,584 technical activities were conducted by the department.
Oil prospecting with geological survey, structure drilling, seismic prospecting and preliminary drilling at the field started in 1945.
SOCAR produced 6.94 million tons of oil from the country’s offshore and onshore fields in January-November 2016, as compared to 7.58 million tons in the same period of 2015.
Along with SOCAR, foreign companies also extract oil in Azerbaijan. In total, 41.59 million tons of oil was produced in Azerbaijan in 2015, as compared to 42.02 million tons in 2014.
The forecast for oil production in the country in 2017 stands at 39.797 million, while the figure is 3.7 percent lower than the index of 2016.
Average daily oil production will amount to 800,000-807,000 barrels in 2017 (in line with Vienna accord), while the daily output for 2016 stands at 842,000 barrels.