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Posts Tagged ‘Kashagan’

Kashagan to Start Production in 2017, Says Royal Dutch Shell Report

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BY MICHELLE WITTE in BUSINESS on 13 APRIL

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ASTANA – Production at Kazakhstan’s giant Kashagan offshore oil field is expected to restart in 2017, Royal Dutch Shell stated in its 2014 annual report.

“After the start of production from the Kashagan field in September 2013, operations had to be stopped in October 2013 due to gas leaks from the sour gas pipeline. Following investigations, it has been decided that both the oil and the gas pipeline will be replaced. Replacement activities are ongoing, with production expected to restart in 2017,” page 27 of the annual report, released on March 12, said.

After sour gas leaks forced production to halt soon after it began in late 2013 – already years behind the original schedule – predictions as to when the project would actually produce have been repeatedly made and then pushed back, and even in late January of this year, Energy Minister Vladimir Shkolnik was announcing that Kashagain would come online in late 2016.

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Project Delays Will Cost These Oil Majors Billions

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 21.01.34Extracts from a Motley Fool article by Rupert Hargreaves published 28 July 2014

In total, Kashagan is now expect to cost a total of $136 billion, more than 140% above initial estimates. Production has been consistently delayed; the most recent delay, which occurred at the end of last year, concerns the project’s pipelines. At present, the project is being overseen by Italy’s Eni, although ExxonMobil is shortly set to take over. Shell, Eni, and Total all have a 16.8% stake in the project, and Morgan Stanley’s analysts believe that as a result of the delays, these three companies will have their 2016 net income estimates reduced by $500 million each. That is a large figure, even for these oil giants.

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Kashagan delays mar outlook for Eni, Total and Shell

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Extract from FT article by Guy Chazan published 20 July 2014

Three of Europe’s largest oil companies could take a $1.5bn hit to earnings as a result of delays to Kashagan, the $50bn oil project in the Caspian Sea that has been bedevilled by hold-ups and cost over-runs.

FULL FT ARTICLE

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2014.

Reflections on the notorious Kashagan ‘Cash All Gone” project 

By John Donovan

In view of the recent shattering news from the jinxed Kashagan project…

Production at Kazakhstan’s Kashagan Oil Field Halted Until 2016

…it is interesting to reflect back on the situation as it was in 2007, reported in this Reuters article by Tom Bergin.

It seems that not much has changed.

It also explains why Royal Dutch Shell ended up issuing a profits warning and launching a fire sale of assets, following a succession of disastrous projects mired by incompetence. 

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Pipeline problems cloud Kashagan oil outlook

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 21.01.34Extract from a Geoff Hiscock article published by The Australian on 2 July 2014

A YEAR ago, one of the world’s biggest oil and gas projects, the massive Kashagan field in Kazakhstan’s part of the Caspian Sea, was on the verge of starting production after more than a decade of development and US$40 billion in costs.

Its backers, a combination of international oil companies ExxonMobil, Shell, Total, Eni, Japan’s Inpex, the China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) and Kazakhstan’s state-owned KazMunaiGas, had every expectation Kashagan would be producing as much as 8 million tonnes of oil this year, equivalent to 170,000 barrels a day.

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Report: Exxon May Take Over as Kashagan Operator

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 21.01.34Extract from a Reuters/Rigzone article by Dmitry Zhdannikov, published Friday 6 June 2014

LONDON, June 6 (Reuters) – U.S. oil major Exxon Mobil is in line to take over as operator of the giant Kashagan field in an attempt to fix the beleaguered $50 billion project offshore Kazakhstan, industry publication Nefte Compass reported on Friday. The Kashagan shareholders are Eni, Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, France’s Total and Kazakh state oil company Kazmunaigas, each with 16.8 percent, and Japan’s Inpex and China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) as junior partners.

FULL ARTICLE

RELATED ARTICLE

Kashagan Appoints Exxon Executive To Run Troubled Oil Venture

ALMATY, June 6 (Reuters) – The troubled Kashagan oil development has named an executive from U.S. firm Exxon Mobil to run the venture while also streamlining its complicated structure in an attempt to fix the beleaguered $50 billion project offshore Kazakhstan. The group said on Friday Stephane de Mahieu, an Exxon secondee, had become managing director as of May 1, 2014. However, it denied a report in industry publication Nefte Compass that Exxon would take over as operator of Kashagan saying that instead all seven oil firms involved will be effectively operators through a rejigged venture.

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Kashagan ‘Cash All Gone’ Pipeline Debacle

Shell has been a key participant in the Kashagan project consortium which includes Eni and ExxonMobil. Given its notorious track record of over-promise and under delivery, having Shell involved is a bad omen for any elephant project.

By John Donovan

The latest news from the “Cash All Gone” project (as it is widely known) is that due to the need to replace fatally flawed leaking pipelines, the oilfield may not restart until 2016. 

The project is already years behind schedule and countless billions over budget.

I have received some related comment and questions from a retired Royal Dutch Shell EP expert that deserve to be put into the public domain.

Shell has been a key participant in the Kashagan project consortium which includes Eni and ExxonMobil. Given its notorious track record of over-promise and under delivery, having Shell involved is a bad omen for any elephant project. 

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Kashagan oilfield may not restart until 2016

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 21.01.34Extracts from a Reuters article by Mariya Gordeyeva published 21 May 2014 under the headline: Kashagan oilfield may not restart until 2016, Kazakh minister says

May 21 (Reuters) – Oil output at Kazakhstan’s giant Kashagan field may not resume until early 2016, Kazakh Oil and Gas Minister Uzakbai Karabalin said on Wednesday, urging foreign partners to start replacing leaky pipelines at the deposit. Production at Kashagan, the world’s biggest oil find in 35 years, started last September but halted in early October after the discovery of gas leaks in the $50 billion project’s pipeline network. The North Caspian Operating Company (NCOC), which develops the offshore field in the Caspian Sea, said last month that it did not expect to produce oil this year due to the leaks. “It (production) may restart by the end of 2015 if all goes well,” Karabalin told Reuters on the sidelines of the Astana Economic Forum. “Otherwise, it may turn out to be early 2016. NCOC includes Eni, Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Total, China’s CNPC, Japan’s Inpex and Kazakh state-run company KazMunaiGas.

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Kazakh Minister: All Kashagan Pipelines To Be Replaced

Screen Shot 2013-07-15 at 07.03.50Extracts from a Reuters article by Olesya Astakhova published 15 May 2014

MOSCOW, May 15 (Reuters) – The consortium developing the giant Kashagan oilfield will have to replace the entire pipeline system at the deposit, Kazakhstan’s oil minister said on Thursday, confirming that output there would not resume this year. The North Caspian Operating Company (NCOC) developing Kashagan said last month that it did not expect to produce oil this year due to the leaks. NCOC includes Eni, Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Total, China’s CNPC, Japan’s Inpex and Kazakh state-run company KazMunaiGas. 

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Kashagan project closed indefinitely

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 21.01.34Extract from oilprice.com article by James Burgess published 23 April 2014 under the headline: “Kashagan Field Plans Pipeline Replacement”

After weeks of review, the operators of Kazakhstan’s giant Kashagan oil field have concluded that pipelines carrying oil and gas will need to be replaced due to extensive damage. The consortium — which includes Eni, Total, Royal Dutch Shell and ExxonMobil — has been repeatedly frustrated by delays and engineering obstacles. With the discovery of the severely corroded pipelines, the project, which was shut down in October 2013 after a brief start, is now closed indefinitely.

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Royal Dutch Shell bets on LNG, on an epic scale

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By John Donovan

The comments below are from a Motley Fool article that draws attention to the fact that Shell’s Prelude FLNG project represents a bet “on an epic scale.”  The author is right. The project is an uninsured, uninsurable risk, which like Shell’s Alaskan ambitions, could potentially destroy Shell. 

As to the likelihood of the project being “on schedule and on budget,” we know Shell’s atrocious “misfires” track record on that score e.g. the Corrib Gas project in Ireland: 13 years behind schedule and four times over budget. And “Cash All Gone” (Kashagan), another white elephant.

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Yet More Problems Hit the World’s Largest Oil Project

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 21.01.34Extract from an article by Rupert Hargreaves published 16 April 2014 by The Motley Fool

Simply put, H2S is eating away at the undersea pipelines, causing cracks and fractures. Gas needs to travel through these lines for the project to start production, and engineers can’t just patch the system up; the whole pipeline network may need to be replaced. Not only are ExxonMobil, Shell, Total, and Eni going to have to fork out more cash to get the project into production, but the Kazakhstan government is now starting to lose patience and has threatened to impose financial penalties on the companies if production does not commence soon.

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Controversial Corrib field to pump gas by next year

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Extracts from an article by Sarah McCabe published 10 April 2014 by the Irish Independent

The development of the field off the north-west coast has been plagued by setbacks, which have delayed it for more than 13 years. Construction of a 4.9km tunnel under Sruwaddacon Bay, a special conversation area, is also progressing, new company documents show. Development of the tunnel was suspended last year after 26-year-old German hydraulics specialist Lars Wagner was tragically killed, following fatal head injuries sustained while working on it. Mayo natural gas find Corrib was first discovered in 1996. It was originally expected that gas would start flowing from it by 2003, meaning the project is now some 13 years behind the original schedule. Reports suggest the cost of developing it has come in around four times as much as original estimates, reaching €3bn.

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Kashagan Debacle: Not enough engineers, too many idiots

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When John Stubbs was assigned to the Kashagan project, he was confronted by an over-budget hopelessly out-of-control shambles and advised Shell senior management that he did not want the job. He was bluntly told by Shell EP boss Malcolm Brinded, to take it, or leave the company. Stubbs, an engineer and project manager highly regarded by his colleagues, chose to depart. Brinded was eventually fired. 

By John Donovan

There is a hilarious video circulating on the Internet revealing how an engineer feels when he’s surrounded by idiots.

It seems that something like this has happened in Kashagan…

It appears now what the problem is: they have used the wrong steel or welding procedures or both on the pipelines. And as a result they have to re-lay all these pipes at an astronomical cost. Not even counting the cost of deferred production. And loss in reputation (or whatever was left of that).

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Another blow to Royal Dutch Shell

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 21.01.34Extract from a Steve LeVine article published 6 April 2014 by qz.com under the headline: “Kazakhstan’s largest oilfield will be shut down for at least two years”

Kashagan will be shut for at least two years while specialty pipelines are made to resist the unforeseen impact of toxic gas, according to a source close to the project. In recent weeks, word has dribbled out that Kashagan—one of the largest supergiant oil finds of the last half-century—may lie dormant through the summer…  Already, $50 billion has been spent, and the delay means a delay in billions of dollars in cashflow expected by Kazakhstan itself and major oil companies including ExxonMobil, Shell, Eni, and France’s Total.  …source close to the project said that Shell began a few days ago to notify its employees and contractors of the news of the long delay to restart the field. It remains to be seen how oil and stock markets will react to the news…

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Kashagan oil field: Stuck between ‘a widow maker’ and ‘a rotating bomb’

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Kashagan aka Cash All Gone

Screen Shot 2014-03-10 at 23.56.16Extracts from an article by Rupert Hargreaves published by The Motley Fool on Mar 31st 2014 under the headline: ExxonMobil Is Spending Plenty but Growth Is Just Around the Corner

The Kashagan field is the largest oil discovery in 40 years, and the project to develop the field has required so much investment and expertise that a consortium of oil majors has been required to develop it. The consortium includes Exxon, Royal Dutch Shell , Italy’s Eni , and France’s Total. Kashagan is not just one of the world’s largest oil fields, but it has also turned into one of the most complex and expensive oil projects ever. From an initial cost estimate of $57 billion for the life of the project, its development is now expected to cost a staggering $136 billion over its lifetime — that’s 138% more than originally planned. Exxon and Shell each have just under a 17% stake in the project, amounting to almost $650 billion in revenues each over the life of the project.

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How a Giant Kazakh Oil Project Went Awry

Extracts from a highly informative Wall Street Journal article by , and

…the project has been plagued by budget blowouts, engineering missteps and management disputes extending from offshore roughnecks to top government and corporate leaders. Miles of leaky pipeline make up what is arguably the world’s most expensive plumbing problem. The project is years late, more than $30 billion over budget and now halted indefinitely.

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Pipelines and welding risks for Shell: Kashagan and Prelude

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 13.18.45…customers of certain Far Eastern shipyards have found that in spite of vessels being delivered with all of the necessary certification, unsurveyed welds have not always been up to the standards of the specific “randomly selected” welds on which the certification had been based. This may have interesting implications for the Prelude vessel…. Since Shell does not seem to be able to ensure that the welds on their pipelines in Kashagan were properly executed, all of which should have been inspected, are they any more likely to be sure of the welds on Prelude?

From an oil industry expert

Mitsui paid $1.1 bn, and Anardarko perhaps $2.66bn to settle their liabilities in respect of Macondo.
 
Mitsui and Anadarko shared responsibility with BP because they were fully appraised of what was going on, and gave their approval to the Macondo operations. Shell is in the same position in Kashagan. It is rather naïve to compare Shell’s role as a partner in Kashagan with that of a shareholder in a public company.
 
In order for partners to give approval they require adequate information, to which they have ready access.
 
See this Wall Street Journal article for more information.
 
On another related subject, customers of certain Far Eastern shipyards have found that in spite of vessels being delivered with all of the necessary certification, unsurveyed welds have not always been up to the standards of the specific “randomly selected” welds on which the certification had been based. This may have interesting implications for the Prelude vessel…. Since Shell does not seem to be able to ensure that the welds on their pipelines in Kashagan were properly executed, all of which should have been inspected, are they any more likely to be sure of the welds on Prelude?

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Cash All Gone

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Extracts from an article by Jim Landers published on 10 March 2014 by The Dallas Morning News under the headline: “Petroleum project costs worldwide benefit Texas prospect”

The cost of developing the world’s largest oil and natural gas fields has reached heights straining the budgets of even the largest oil companies. Royal Dutch Shell, Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron and Total are all looking to spend less than they did last year on projects that have broken the $50 billion threshold. In Kazakhstan, where several of the biggest oil companies are struggling to bring online the Kashagan oil field beneath the Caspian Sea, project cost estimates have gone as high as $187 billion, according to Offshore Technology.com. Even if the Kashagan field begins production later this year well below that peak cost estimate, it may still take decades before the partners (Exxon Mobil, Shell, Italy’s Eni, Total, KazMunaiGas, IPEX and China National Petroleum Corp.) recover their costs.

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Kazakhstan sues Kashagan oil group for $737 mln in pollution case

Extracts from article by Dmitry Solovyov published on 7 March 2014 by Reuters

Screen Shot 2014-03-07 at 08.15.05ASTANA, March 7 (Reuters) – Kazakhstan is suing the multinational consortium developing the huge Kashagan oilfield in the Caspian Sea for 134.2 billion tenge ($737 million) over damage to the environment, the Environment Protection Ministry said on Friday. Production at Kashagan, the world’s biggest oil discovery in 35 years, which took 13 years and some $50 billion to bring onstream, began in September but was stopped just weeks later after gas was found to be leaking from its pipelines.  Exxon, Royal Dutch Shell, Total, Eni and Kazakh state oil company KazMunaiGas each hold a 16.81 percent stake in Kashagan.

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Kashagan Oilfield To Reach Original Production Estimate By 2015

LONDON SOUTH EAST: Thursday, 13th Feb 2014

Costs at the Kashagan site have spiralled in recent years and it has taken 13 years since the beginning of development to reach this point. Once oil starts to flow at the site, Shell, which owns 16.81% of the Kashagan development, is expected to take over management of production operations, along with Kazakhstani state company KazMunaiGas JSC. Shell also will take on planning, development and construction of phase 2 of the project’s offshore facilities, which is designed to bring it up to full production.

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Shell’s Recent Profit Warning Won’t Be the Last

Thanks to upstream cost overruns and downstream overcapacity, 2013 probably will not be the last year Shell faces low earnings. Not only is Gorgon facing big challenges, the Shell-ExxonMobil-Total-KazMunaiGas-Eni Kashagan project was recently shut down due to pipeline leaks. The field’s current $50 billion cost is more than five times its original price

By Joshua BondyJanuary 22, 2014

Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE: RDS-A  ) just issued a big profit warning for the fourth quarter of 2013, bringing its expected full-year 2013 earnings to $16.8 billion. This is a significant fall from its 2012 full-year earnings of $27.2 billion. Thanks to upstream cost overruns and downstream overcapacity, 2013 probably will not be the last year Shell faces low earnings.

Downstream challenges
Shell’s refineries put a hole in its Q4 2013 earnings. Its Asia-Pacific and European refineries are facing margin pressures and for good reason. They don’t have access to cheap U.S. crude. They are forced to buy expensive Brent crude and pay a premium relative to U.S. refiners. Also, U.S. refiners have access to cheap natural gas and natural gas liquids.

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Crippled Kashagan oil project a bureaucratic “nightmare”

Screen Shot 2014-01-02 at 07.36.30The consortium, which includes ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Total and Kazakh state oil firm KazMunaiGas, first put one of the smaller partners – Italy’s Eni – in charge of construction and delivery in 2001/02. They retreated from that decision in 2008/09 after years of delays and cost escalation, opting instead for collective responsibility. “It’s a bit of a nightmare to be honest,” said one industry source with knowledge of the project. Kashagan has cost an estimated $50 billion so far, five times early projections, and its 13-year life is a tale mostly of delay.

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Thu Jan 2, 2014 1:00am EST

* Production halted shortly after start-up by pipeline leaks

* Seven-partner project suffering long delays and cost over-runs

* Now run collectively instead of usual single operator model

* One source calls it a “nightmare” operating “by committee”

By Andrew Callus and Stephen Jewkes

LONDON/MILAN Jan 2 (Reuters) – Giant Kazakh oilfield Kashagan, which was brought to a halt by leaks shortly after start-up last year, is grappling with a bureaucratic “nightmare” on top of its engineering troubles as it strives for commercial production in 2014.

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Eni CEO Doesn’t See Kashagan Output Stoppage Running into 2015

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December 6, 2013

A prolonged halt at the Kashagan oil field, which has been plagued by years of delays and cost overruns, could be a drag on the finances of the consortium behind the project, which includes Exxon Mobil Corp, France’s Total SA, Eni and Royal Dutch Shell PLC).

FULL ARTICLE

RELATED REUTERS ARTICLE

World’s costliest oil field arrives, but Kazakh dreams shrivel

A consortium including Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Total and ENI once promised to transform the prospects of the entire country of Kazakhstan and earn massive profits for their own shareholders. But those dreams have shrivelled amid cost overruns, delays, government interference and internal disputes among partners.

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Kashagan field commercial production delayed until 2014

Kashagan field commercial production delayed until 2014

08 November 2013

Kashagan is a major oil and gas field in the Kazakh sector of the Caspian Sea with reserves estimated at 38 billion barrels (six billion tonnes) of which eleven billion barrels are recoverable. The field also has over one trillion cubic metres of gas.

The consortium is led by Italian company ENI and commercial production was originally due to start in 2008. In late May 2012, the government of Kazakhstan signed an updated agreement stipulating the start of commercial production before June 2013.

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China Gains New Friends in Its Quest for Energy

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A version of this article appears in print on September 24, 2013, on page A4 of the New York edition

ATYRAU, Kazakhstan — On the northern reaches of the Caspian Sea, not far from this old Soviet town known for its oil and sturgeon, lies a vast new oil find, the biggest outside the Middle East. China was rebuffed when it asked for a stake 10 years ago.

But when the pumps finally started this month, the China National Petroleum Corporation had won a share in the project, known as Kashagan, and President Xi Jinping was in the region recently to celebrate, another indication that China’s influence has eclipsed even Russia’s across the former Soviet republics of Central Asia.

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Bad Omen for the Future of Mega-Oil Projects

Seven years and $24 billion. No, that isn’t the price tag for a major project coming online. That’s how late and how much over budget the giant Kashagan oil project in the Caspian Sea ended up being before it started flowing this week.

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Seven years and $24 billion.

No, that isn’t the price tag for a major project coming online. That’s how late and how much over budget the giant Kashagan oil project in the Caspian Sea ended up being before it started flowing this week. Bringing in multiple stakeholders on these complex, challenging megaprojects in the energy industry has become a pretty nasty cocktail for those involved. Are the blunders with Kashagan an exception or the rule when it comes to these major projects? Let’s look at some other major projects going on right now to see what Big Oil has in store for its next big move.

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World’s costliest oil field arrives, but Kazakh dreams shrivel

A consortium including Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Total and ENI once promised to transform the prospects of the entire country of Kazakhstan and earn massive profits for their own shareholders. But those dreams have shrivelled amid cost overruns, delays, government interference and internal disputes among partners.

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Source: Reuters – Wed, 11 Sep 2013 03:13 PM

* Kashagan pumps first oil a decade later at cost of $50 bln

* Oil majors yet to sanction expansion as returns unclear

* Kazakh leader scales back oil ambitions

By Vladimir Soldatkin and Mariya Gordeyeva

ALMATY/MOSCOW, Sept 11 (Reuters) – When the first drops of oil began trickling from the world’s most expensive oil field on Wednesday, investors in the mammoth Kashagan Caspian Sea project sighed in relief, but they have little chance of earning back their billions any time soon.

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Kashagan Oil Field Moves Closer to First Production

Hello John

Just read this stuff below. I forgot how many years this first production is overdue but it could well be 10 years or so! Once they get it going, the production will increase a lot, there genuinely is a lot of oil there!

Shell is one of the joint venture partners.

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By Sarah Kent

LONDON–The giant Kashagan oil field in Kazakhstan has moved one step closer toward first production with the introduction of gas into its offshore facility, the field’s operator said in a statement Wednesday.

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Costly Risk In New Oil Exploration

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Over the past few years, the large Western oil majors have been plagued by projects running substantially over budget, and taking much longer to complete than initially estimated. These hurdles are part of the broader challenge facing oil companies — how to cope with the end of the era of “easy oil.” Let’s take a closer look at one project — the Kashagan oil field — that epitomizes these challenges.

A primer on Kashagan
Kashagan is a vast untapped oil field in Kazakhstan with massive hydrocarbon potential. Yet, despite its operators — a consortium of companies including ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM  ) , Eni, and Royal Dutch Shell – having plowed more than $30 billion into the project over the past decade, the field has yet to produce a single drop of oil.

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A $30 Billion Hole in the Caspian Sea?

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For more than a decade, the promised bonanza from Kazakhstan’s giant offshore Kashagan oil field has been a costly mirage for its developers. And the wait still isn’t over.

The companies backing the project—which include Exxon Mobil Corp., Eni Spa and Royal Dutch Shell PLC—in March missed the startup date Eni predicted last year. And now, after a decade of work and more than $30 billion in expenses, it isn’t clear when one of the world’s biggest untapped fields will produce its first drop of oil.

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Development challenge of Kazakhstan’s giant oilfield

Kashagan – a giant offshore oil field in the Caspian Sea – The project is better known (in Shell circles) as “Cash all gone”

7 December 2012

By Rayhan Demytrie BBC News, Kashagan oil field, Kazakhstan

t has cost $46bn (£28.8bn) to develop Kazakhstan’s most ambitious project, Kashagan – a giant offshore oil field in the Caspian Sea, the world’s biggest oil find in the past 40 years.

Kashagan holds about 13 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Simply put, it is enough to power the world for up to five months.

Once production starts next year, the majority of Kashagan’s oil will reach markets in Europe and China, making it an important non-OPEC source of energy.

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Exxon, Shell Said to Face Delay on Kashagan Output Boost

By Nariman Gizitdinov – Nov 20, 2012 9:45 AM GMT

Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) and their partners in Kazakhstan’s Kashagan oil field face a delay of at least two years on a plan to boost output 20 percent, reducing the time they have to recoup costs in the $46 billion project that’s already running eight years late, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.

Kazakhstan has told the partners to put the $5 billion step-up plan, taking output to as much as 450,000 from 370,000 barrels day, on hold until they study how the start of production next year affects the deposit, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

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Shell’s ‘hands off’ approach pushes up costs

From our November 2005 Shell News Archive

Financial Times: Shell’s ‘hands off’ approach pushes up costs

“Shell’s dependence on contractors may help explain why it has lost control over costs at some of its largest projects. This summer, the company said the price tag of Sakhalin-2, a giant natural gas project in eastern Russia, had doubled to $20bn.”: “Shell has conceded it has a problem.”

Monday 7 November 2005

Shell projects ‘over-reliant’ on contractors

By Carola Hoyos and Thomas Catan in London
Published: November 7 2005

* Concern that handing over critical exploration and production functions is linked to spiralling costs

Royal Dutch Shell is over-reliant on outside contractors to manage its large exploration and production projects, a confidential internal analysis has found.

Ed Merrow, an outside consultant commissioned by Shell to evaluate project management, found the company was almost wholly dependent on contractors for critical functions, including scheduling and cost control. Shell took a “distinctly hands-off approach”, Mr Merrow found. A copy of the presentation, which evaluated 13 projects, was obtained by the Financial Times.

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Exxon, Shell Said Seeking Control of $46 Billion Kashagan Field

By Nariman Gizitdinov on August 30, 2012

Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) are seeking bigger stakes in the Kashagan oil field and operating control before starting to expand the $46 billion project, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.

Exxon and Shell also want Kazakhstan’s government to extend the production-sharing agreement for 20 years before investing more in the Caspian Sea field, touted as the world’s biggest discovery in four decades when found, the people said, declining to be identified as the talks are confidential.

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Peter Voser, another Shell CEO tainted by scandal

FROM A SHELL INSIDER

Hello John

No doubt you are already aware, but in these Olympic times with your queen jumping out of a helicopter, one never knows.

You are aware of the growing Libor scandal. I just read that other banks also were involved such as RBS and the Swiss UBS.

Now, who was a director not too long ago in UBS?????

And on another topic, the window of opportunity to drill a well in the arctic is narrowing by the day. Before too long they will have to postpone the whole circus for another 8 months. This will cost a fortune. Not good planning. I see similarities with the Kashagan field. Too little detailed planning upfront, too much arms-length management (the boys know what they are doing) and then things derail. No money has been earned just yet on one of the biggest discoveries in the last few decades.

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Eni, Exxon, Shell to Fund $986 Million Kazakh Share for Kashagan

By Svetlana Antoncheva and Nariman Gizitdinov – May 28, 2012 6:48 AM GMT+0100

Eni SpA (ENI), Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) agreed to fund the $986 million costs owed by Kazakhstan’s state energy producer for one of the world’s biggest oil fields, Oil and Gas Minister Sauat Mynbayev said.

The foreign partners will pay Kazmunaigaz’s share of the costs for Kashagan this year and next, Mynbayev told reporters in Astana today. It wasn’t clear if Kazmunaigaz will repay its foreign partners out of future revenue from the project.

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Kashagan’s Foreign Partners to Finance State’s Share of Costs

By Nariman Gizitdinov – May 24, 2012 11:02 AM GMT+0100

Eni SpA (ENI), Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) agreed to shoulder the investment costs owed by Kazakhstan’s state energy producer for one of the world’s biggest oil fields this year and next.

The international partners, which also include Total SA (FP) and ConocoPhillips (COP), will bear KazMunaiGaz National Co. costs in the offshore Kashagan field for 2012 and 2013, the Kazakh oil and gas ministry said in a statement late yesterday.

“The parties agreed that the consortium will finance the share of KazMunaiGaz’s investments in the project in the period in 2012-2013,” it said.

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Kazakhs Consider Bid to Boost Kashagan Oil Cost to $46 Billion

By Nariman Gizitdinov – Jan 11, 2012 6:00 PM GMT

The Kazakh government is considering a request from Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) and other partners to raise the budget for the first phase of the Kashagan oil project by 20 percent to $46 billion, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

The international oil companies, which include Eni SpA (ENI) and Total SA (FP), will bear the extra cost themselves, the person said, declining to be identified as the information isn’t public. Kazakhstan’s state energy company, which also has a stake, will reimburse them with barrels of oil for its share once output starts, he said.

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Biggest Oil Find in Decades Becomes $39 Billion Cautionary Tale

After 11 years and $39 billion of investment, Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) and their partners have yet to sell a drop of oil from what was touted as the world’s biggest discovery in four decades.

Kashagan Expansion May Finish Earlier, KazMunaiGaz CEO Says

October 26, 2011, 7:24 PM EDT

By Nariman Gizitdinov and Hellmuth Tromm

Oct. 27 (Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc and other partners in the Kashagan venture may complete expansion as early as 2017, allowing Kazakhstan to reach its goal of becoming one of the world’s biggest oil exporters faster.

“If the partners will choose the field’s development conception by the end of this year or beginning of next year” and the government approves it, the expansion may be finished by 2017 or 2018, as much as a year earlier than the company previously estimated, said Bolat Akchulakov, chief executive officer of KazMunaiGaz National Co., a partner in the project.

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Shell’s giant Kazakhstan oil project in crisis

Royal Dutch Shell and its partners are to ask the Kazakh government for an extension to the 2013 deadline for the first oil from their troubled Kashagan field.

By Richard Orange, Almaty, Kazakhstan

5:40AM BST 01 Jul 2011

Kazakh oil minister Sauat Mynbayev has repeatedly threatened the consortium of oil companies with heavy financial penalties if it misses the 2013 final deadline.

The partners, including Shell, Total, ExxonMobil, Eni and Kazakh state oil company KMG, have repeatedly missed start dates beginning as far back as 2005.

A last-ditch plan to meet the 2013 deadline involved pumping at least 50,000 barrels per day of oil directly onshore, bypassing an unfinished processing plant on an artificial island.

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Shell shuts Caspian office, $50bn Kashagan project on ice

Royal Dutch Shell will shut its Caspian office for the giant Kashagan oil field at the end of this month, effectively putting the crucial £30bn ($50bn) project on ice for at least two years.

Staff at Shell Development Kashagan in Atyrau have been laid off or relocated and the office closes on May 30. Photo: ALAMY

Richard Orange By Richard Orange, in Aktau 3:32PM BST 24 May 2011

The move followed the Kazakh government’s decision to reject a new lower-cost design for the crucial main development phase of the oilfield which has the potential to produce more than 1m barrels a day.

Staff at Shell Development Kashagan in Atyrau, a port on Kazakhstan’s Caspian coast, have been laid off or relocated over the past few weeks, and on May 30, the office will be closed.

The move follows a warning from Karim Massimov, Kazakhstan’s prime minister, that the project would not go ahead unless the disagreements on cost were overcome.

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Shell slashes $18bn from Kashagan costs

DAILY TELEGRAPH: Royal Dutch Shell has radically simplified the design of the Kashagan oil development, slashing $18bn (£11.5bn) from the cost of the second phase of development as it strives to make the project economically viable.

By Richard Orange in Almaty
Published: 11:38AM BST 25 Oct 2010

The milestone report from Shell’s Kashagan Cost Reduction Team reduces the cost estimate for the second phase of the project from $68bn to $50bn, a senior Kazakh official told The Daily Telegraph.

Shell took control of the planning of the second phase from Italy’s Eni at the start of last year. The Anglo-Dutch company has been working to turn around the economics of the project, which will take production capacity to 1m barrels per day, from the first phase’s production capacity of 450,000.

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Kazakh oil telling for industry’s future

Campbell Keir, director of Royal Dutch Shell in Kazakhstan, says the offshore Kashagan field is one of the most technically challenging fields in the industry, which may be the future of the energy sector.

French group’s executive appointed to get Kashagan oil flowing by 2012

A recent settlement decided that Total will provide the first managing director of the newly established North Caspian Operating Company. The decision ended more than a year of dispute between the project's international oil company partners - most notably ExxonMobil of the US, and Total, Royal Dutch Shell and Eni of Europe - and the Kazakh government.

Western Oil Companies Resolve Kazakh Dispute

The project also has more partners than most ventures of its kind: besides ENI, there is Royal Dutch Shell PLC, Exxon Mobil Corp.,Total SA, ConocoPhillips, Inpex Holdings Inc. of Japan and KazMunaiGas. Strained relations between the partners have added to the project's complexity.

The Times: Natural Resources: Monday September 22, 2008

Royal Dutch Shell Kazakhstan said that KazMunaiGas, the state oil company, would create a joint venture with Royal Dutch Shell, the Anglo-Dutch oil and gas group, to handle the production segment of the Kashagan oilfield.

Shell poised to sign deal with Kazakhstan on oil joint venture

Royal Dutch Shell was on the verge of sealing a deal with Kazakhstan yesterday that could lead to taking joint control of one of the world's biggest oilfields.