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Russia's largest independent oil producer LUKoil plans to increase oil output
Russia's largest independent oil producer LUKoil plans to increase oil output by 1.8-2% in 2008, the company's CEO Vagit Alekperov said on Friday.

Alekperov forecast that his company would increase "oil output by 1.8-2%, excluding new acquisitions."

LUKoil produced 96.6 million metric tons (710.01 million bbl) of oil in 2007.

"The company is seeking to purchase numerous upstream and downstream assets this year," the businessman said.

Addressing a conference held by the Russian presidential envoy to the Northwest Federal District, Alekperov said LUKoil had opened 21 deposits in the region in 2000-2007 and would commission 60 oil and gas fields in the region by 2020.

Ravil Maganov, the company's executive vice-president, said LUKoil planned to invest around 28 billion rubles ($1.2 billion) in geological exploration in northwest Russia by 2017.

The company plans to produce 260 million tons (1.9 billion bbl) of oil in the region by 2017.

LUKoil, which accounts for about 1.3% of global oil reserves and 2.1% of world crude output, said in February its oil production had increased by an estimated 1.5% in 2007 to 96.6 million metric tons (708 mln barrels).

The company announced plans in March to increase its natural gas output in Russia by 30% to 15 billion cubic meters in 2008. The company produced just under 14 billion cu m of gas last year.


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