Gazprom reported on September 22, 2016, that it had discovered a new offshore natural gas field at the Kirinskoye field of the Sakhalin Island Shelf in the Sea of Okhotsk.
As soon as the well is tested and the geological information is analyzed, the reserves estimates for the new field will be submitted to the Federal Subsurface Use Agency for the purpose of their approval and inclusion into the State Register of Mineral Reserves of the Russian Federation.
As part of the Sakhalin III project, Gazprom is engaged in the geological exploration of 3 licensed blocks: Kirinsky, Ayashsky, and Vostochno-Odoptinsky.
Within the Kirinsky block, Gazprom also discovered the Yuzhno-Kirinskoye and Mynginskoye fields.
The field is crucial for Gazprom's plans to raise liquefied gas production at its Sakhalin-2 plant on the island. It has not disclosed the reserves of the newly discovered deposit.
Reuters reported that Shell, which also has a stake in the LNG plant, may also get a share in the Kirinskoye field as part of an asset swap deal with Gazprom, though the prospects for this are uncertain because of international sanctions for Russia's role in the Ukraine crisis.
These bar Western companies from development of deep-sea gas deposits in Russia and from some oil fields as well.
In 2015, the United States restricted exports, re-exports and transfers of technology and equipment to the Yuzhno-Kirinskoye field, part of the wider Kirinskoye deposit.