17:15 GMT +318 September 2018
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    Statoil to invest "as much as necessary" in gas field

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    MOSCOW, June 28 (RIA Novosti) - The Norwegian major Statoil is ready to invest "as much as necessary needed," if it receives a 25% stake in the development of the Shtokman gas condensate field, Statoil President Helge Lund told the business daily Vedomosti.

    Statoil, the second after Gazprom in gas supplies to Europe, "is beginning more specific activities in Russia," he said.

    The Norwegian project Snohvit in the Barents Sea is the first European project to produce liquefied natural gas. Its technologies can be used at Shtokman, situated on the Russian shelf of the Barents Sea, with gas reserves of 3,205.3 billion cu m and gas condensate reserves of 30.98 million tons.

    Gas from Snohvit will be sent to the United States by tankers in 2006.

    In terms of operating in Russia, Statoil first of all needs to assess project risks. This business has a long-term basis, and so the stable tax system and legislation are crucial, Lund said.

    The most important things in the tax system are its clearness, transparency and stability.

    Lund does not see danger in the increase of the government's control over Russia's strategic resources. This is a global trend and in the majority of countries the energy sector is becoming increasingly pivotal, he said.

    He said about 71% of Statoil belonged to the state. But it is important that private capital should also be present in the sector. This guarantees new technologies and efficiency, he said.

    Statoil plans long-term investment in Russia because of its geographical proximity to Russia and the two countries' stable political relations.

    Russian and Norwegian companies have a lot in common concerning technologies, Lund said. The oil major decided to work in Russia believing that it could organize its activities and overcome risks, he said.

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