Rosneft announced late Wednesday that it has agreed with its partner ExxonMobil to progress a proposed LNG project on Sakhalin Island in the Russian Far East.
Rosneft said that the contractor selection process for design and engineering work has also officially begun.
For the remainder of this year and 2014 the two firms plan to complete design work, including selection of a liquefaction technology and identification of major equipment requirements, as well as perform engineering surveys, develop front-end engineering and design (FEED) for the LNG plant, hydro-technical marine facilities and a source gas pipeline. An environmental impact assessment will also be completed.
The project will use a team of experts from both companies.
Rosneft President Igor Sechin commented in a company statement:
"Rosneft's offshore license areas hold massive hydrocarbon resource potential, most of which is natural gas. Given the fact that offshore fields are difficult to reach and are not connected to the national gas supply system, the most efficient way to monetize these resources is to liquefy the natural gas and sell the LNG in export markets.
"We are optimistic about prospects for LNG export liberalization in Russia in the near term and are pleased to announce that we have entered an important stage of the LNG project jointly with our strategic partner ExxonMobil."
Rosneft said the capacity of the Sakhalin LNG plant is expected to be five million tons per year, subject to further expansion. The liquefaction plant, which is scheduled for 2018, will receive natural gas from Rosneft's reserves in the Far East and other Sakhalin gas reserves.