Representatives of Gazprom say that the final partners will be announced in the last quarter of the year. Gazprom intends to keep 51 percent of shares in the field. The Shtokman field contains as much as 3,2 trillion m3 of gas and could become a vital supplier of hydrocarbons to the US.
Most experts did believe that both the two Norwegian companies would be among the preferred companies. Statoil and Hydro have sophisticated offshore technology and have long lobbied the Gazprom company for a share of Shtokman. If the Norwegian companies end of among the 2-3 final partners in the project, they will be able to link experiences and assets in the Norwegian North to the Russian side, BarentsObserver reports.
ConocoPhillips was also among the favourites for the short-list. For some, it is more of a surprise that the French Total and Chevron are on the list. If Total is chosen to be a partner at the Shtokman, the company will be a major foreign company in the Northwest Russian oil industry. The company already operates the Kharyaga oil field in the Timano-Pechora province.