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    RUSSIAN AND KAZAKH OIL PRODUCERS TO SIGN AGREEMENT ON EXPLORATION OF CASPIAN SEA SHELF

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    MOSCOW, January 8, 2004. /RIA Novosti/ -- Russian and Kazakh oil producers will sign an agreement on the exploration of the Caspian Sea shelf.

    The signing of the bilateral agreement between the Russian LUKOIL and Kazakh KazMunaiGaz in line with "Dostyk" project is expected within the framework of Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to Kazakhstan on January 9-10, the Russian Ministry of Energy disclosed. Russian Minister of Energy Igor Yusufov is expected to participate in the talks and the ceremony of the agreement signing.

    The aim of the "Dostyk" project is the exploration of the two Kazakh sectors on the Caspian Sea - "Tyub-Karagan" and "Atashskaya". The total amount of the both sides' investments into this project is estimated at $3 bln.

    Other plans, concerning the joint exploration of the Caspian Sea shelf, will be discussed in the course of the meeting as well, the Russian Ministry of Energy reported.

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