Oil Rocks infrastructure centre connecting other oil fields of Azerbaijan; Source: SOCAR

TotalEnergies inaugurates gas field while anticipating enrichment of Azerbaijan’s transition arsenal with renewables and energy storage

France’s energy giant TotalEnergies has held an inauguration ceremony with its partners for a gas and condensate field, which recently came on stream in the Caspian Sea. Aside from boosting Azerbaijan’s hydrocarbon potential, the oil major is also planning to bolster the country’s energy transition story with new renewable energy chapters, primarily related to wind and solar, along with energy storage systems.

Oil Rocks infrastructure centre connecting other oil fields of Azerbaijan; Source: SOCAR

Totalenergies’ Chairman and CEO met on Thursday, 31 August 2023, with Ilham Aliyev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, as well as Mikayil Jabbarov, Minister of Economy and Chairman of SOCAR’s Supervisory Board; Parviz Shahbazov, Minister of Energy; and Rovshan Najaf, President of SOCAR, in Baku regarding the inauguration ceremony of the Absheron gas field, whose first development phase started production in early July 2023 and is currently producing 1.5 billions of cubic meters per year (bcma).

The first phase of this field development connects a subsea production well to a new gas processing platform, which is linked to SOCAR’s existing facilities in Oil Rocks. The Absheron gas and condensate field is located around 100 km southeast of Baku in the Caspian Sea and operated by JOCAP (Joint Operating Company of Absheron Petroleum).

The Oil Rocks field, which is an administrative part of the Pirallahy district, is located 110 km east of Baku, 50 km southeast of Pirallahy Island in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea. This field serves as a strategic communication and infrastructure centre connecting other oil fields of Azerbaijan with up to 70 per cent of SOCAR’s annual oil and gas production being transferred to the coast from there.

During this meeting, TotalEnergies’ projects in Azerbaijan were discussed. This included the launch of the second phase of the Absheron development, which is expected to increase the field’s production to 5.5 bcma, in line with the country’s ambition to supply the European market.

In addition, the French energy giant plans to participate in the development of Azerbaijan’s renewable energy potential under the memorandum of understanding signed in June 2023 to assess and develop 500 MW of renewable wind and solar energies and energy storage systems for the national grid.

Patrick Pouyanné, Chairman and CEO of TotalEnergies, commented: “I am very pleased to inaugurate Absheron, alongside the national company SOCAR and our new partner ADNOC. Discovered by our exploration team, this gas field provides additional gas resources to contribute to diversifying gas supply for Europe.

“In line with our multi-energy strategy, we also look forward to supporting Azerbaijan in implementing its own energy transition strategy, through an agreement to develop renewable energy combined with electricity storage.”

TotalEnergies has been present in Azerbaijan since 1996, where it holds a 5 per cent stake in the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline and will own a 35 per cent stake in the Absheron gas and condensate field after the completion of the sale to ADNOC. The field has a production capacity of 4 million cubic meters of gas per day and 12,000 barrels a day of condensate. The gas is sold on the domestic market in Azerbaijan.

This is one of the three start-ups, which TotalEnergies planned for this year in a bid to boost its hydrocarbon production by approximately 2 per cent to 2.5 Mboe/d in 2023. The other two are Block 10 in Oman and Mero 2 in Brazil.