Russian oil companies accelerate commissioning of new wells - Vedomosti

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MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian oil companies put into operation 2,001 new oil wells in the first quarter of 2023, up 10% year-on-year, the Vedomosti daily reported on Thursday, citing two sources familiar with Energy Ministry's statistics.

The increase in commissioning of new wells comes amid Russia's voluntary cut in oil production. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said last week that Russian oil and gas condensate production is expected to decline to around 515 million tonnes (10.3 million bpd) this year from 535 million tonnes in 2022.

Major Russian oil companies didn't respond to Vedomosti's requests for comment, the daily said. Rosneft, Lukoil, Gazprom Neft, Surgutneftegaz and Tatneft did not immediately respond to Reuters' requests for comment.

The Energy Ministry's press office said that the government was working together with oil and gas companies to ensure the replacement and growth of oil reserves, the newspaper reported.

"This is done both to maintain current production volumes and to increase them in the future, including through the commissioning of new fields," Vedomosti said, citing the ministry.

(Reporting by Reuters)