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Kazakhstan’s offshore oilfield, Kashagan, has cut its production by nearly half since early May due to maintenance, sources told Reuters on Tuesday.
The maintenance began on May 19 and will continue for months—until August 3. Production will stop completely at the giant Kashagan field in June due to that same maintenance.
Kazakhstan’s oil production quota assigned by the OPEC+ group for May sits at 1.638 million bpd. For June, it will be lifted to 1.655. But Kazakhstan has been producing more than its quota.
Due to the maintenance, however, Kazakhstan’s actual production fell on May 22 to 1.66 million bpd—from around 1.85 million bpd earlier in May.
CNPC, Eni, ExxonMobil, Inpex, KazMunayGaz, Shell, and Total, form the field’s consortium.
The production loss comes at a time when all eyes are on OPEC and nonOPEC members of the group formed to keep the oil market in balance, known as OPEC+.
Kazakhstan suffered another oil disruption in March and April of this year, when the pipeline that the country uses to export most of its oil was rendered mostly unusable due to damage caused by a storm. The Caspian Pipeline Consortium said that two of three tanker-loading facilities were not operable. It wasn’t back up and running at full capacity for a month, until the week of April 26.
The CPC restoration was slow going because the parts needed for repair were disrupted by the sanctions on Russia.
Kazakhstan sends more than two-thirds of its oil to Europe via the CPC pipeline.
Kazakstan said earlier this week that it expects to produce between 90 million tonnes and 93 million tonnes of oil in 2023, up from 87.5 million tonnes per year this year—contingent upon the expansion of the Tengiz field, which could be delayed.
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
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Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for Oilprice.com, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group.