Russia running out of oil? Profitable reserves may last only another 20 years, Moscow says, citing improved tech as only solution

Russia’s lucrative role as one of the world’s largest energy exporters could be under threat in the not-too-distant future, a top Moscow official has warned, claiming oil deposits could begin running dry within just two decades.

Speaking to journalists at an oil and gas conference in the Siberian city of Tyumen on Wednesday, the acting head of the Federal Agency for Mineral Resources, Evgeny Petrov, said the supply of black gold is far from never-ending. According to him, “profitable reserves [of oil] will last for around 20 or 21 years.”

If Moscow wants to retain its status as one of the world’s largest sellers of crude oil, it will have to invest in new technologies to explore and tap deposits that are harder to access, Petrov said. He went on to add that there could be vast, untapped riches under the soil in Western Siberia. “Extraction is still ongoing here, and there is potential for it to go on for many, many years,” the official claimed.

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Russia’s oil output plunges to LOWEST in nearly a decade

In January, output of the coveted petrochemical plunged to the lowest level amid turmoil over international energy markets, with oil prices falling by an unprecedented margin as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Earlier this summer, statistics published by the Russian government showed the country’s economy was becoming less and less dependent on barreling oil and pumping gas. In the first part of this year, the energy sector made up only around 15% of the country’s official gross domestic product, down from nearly 20% the year before, with manufacturing, chemicals, and heavy industry making up the difference.

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Just weeks later, the Russian government announced that it had set up a series of working groups to help the country transition away from petrochemicals and become an innovator in the field of green energy. Organized by First Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Belousov, the initiative is designed to plan out how the world’s transition away from fossil fuels towards greener energy can be an opportunity for the country’s economy, rather than a threat.

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