Bloomberg News

Gazprom, Wintershall Plan to Swap North Sea, Siberian Assets

October 28, 2011

(Updates with details on costs in third paragraph.)

Oct. 28 (Bloomberg) -- OAO Gazprom and BASF SE’s Wintershall AG unit plans to swap assets in the North Sea and a western Siberian deposit, expanding cooperation after opening Russia’s first gas pipeline directly to Europe.

Gazprom will get 50 percent of oil and gas fields in the southern part of the North Sea under the deal, the Moscow-based gas producer and export monopoly said today in an e-mailed statement. Wintershall will get 25 percent plus one share in blocks 4 and 5 of the Achimov formation in the Urengoy field.

Wintershall has an option to raise its stake in the Achimov blocks to 50 percent, the Kassel, Germany-based company said. The North Sea blocks are in Netherlands and U.K. waters.

Michael Grabicki, a BASF spokesman, said it will cost “several billion euros” over the next 10 years to develop Achimov blocks 4 and 5, declining to provide further detail. Gazprom will receive interests of equal value to those blocks, according to Wintershall’s statement.

Wintershall has 25 platforms for natural gas in the southern North Sea belonging to the Netherlands, and one each in the U.K. and Germany. The company is expanding its presence in the U.K., where it owns 20 licenses, and in Denmark, Germany, and Norway, spokesman Stefan Leunig said. Details on which projects Gazprom will join haven’t been set, he said.

In Russia, the companies produce gas at the Yuzhno-Russkoye gas field in Siberia and are developing area 1A of the Achimov layers of the Urengoy field. They are also partners in the Nord Stream pipeline, which crosses the Baltic Sea to Germany.

--Editors: Torrey Clark, Randall Hackley

To contact the reporters on this story: Stephen Bierman in Moscow at; Richard Weiss in Frankfurt at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at

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