Karachaganak: the onshore field in Kazakhstan

Located in the western part of the country, the field produces oil, condensates and natural gas.

Working at great depths

Work by the consortium Karachaganak Petroleum Operating (KPO), under concession until 2037, is governed by a production-sharing agreement between Eni and our co-operator Shell. We produce liquids (condensates and oil) from the deepest sections of the field. About 50 per cent of the gas produced we sell to the power station at Orenburg in Russia; the rest is injected into the higher parts of the field or used to produce fuel gas. About 95 per cent of the liquids produced are stabilised at the Karachaganak Processing Complex (KPC), then marketed in the West through the Caspian Pipeline Consortium and the Atyrau-Samara pipeline, which is linked to Russian export systems. Until September 2018, when the acquisition contract expired, the remainder of the liquids were sent, without being stabilised, to the Orenburg power station. With regard to ongoing development, the Karachaganak Process Center Debottlenecking project was approved as part of the increase in the gas-treatment capacity at plants in the Karachaganak field. Work is expected to end in 2020. Capacity will be ensured in the coming years by installing more facilities for reinjecting gas.

Within the gas treatment expansion projects of the Karachaganak field, in 2021 activities concerned: 

  • the Karachaganak Debottlenecking project was completed. The construction of a fourth gas reinjection unit is currently being finalized

  • the Karachaganak Expansion Project (KEP) to increase gas re-injection capacity progressed. The project is scheduled to be achieved in several phases. The development program of the first phase, sanctioned at the end of 2020, provides the construction of a sixth injection line, the drilling of three additional injection wells and of a new gas compression unit. Start-up is expected in 2024. The project includes an additional phase with the installation of a new treatment and compression units.

In 2021, production of the Karachaganak field averaged 226 kbbl/day of liquids (40 kbbl/day net to Eni) and 866 mmcf/day of natural gas (approximately 160 mmCF/day net to Eni).

Safety first

Safety in the workplace is an imperative value we want to share with our employees, contractors and local stakeholders. We are committed to eliminate accidents and protect the integrity of our assets. We consolidate a culture of safety through management and organization models, digital tools and communication initiatives. Our goal is strengthening the awareness of our people and their sense of responsibility toward themselves and others, by expanding HSE tools and digitalization to make corporate processes safer, more efficient and faster. 

Impact on the environment and communities

We remain committed to supporting communities in the areas in which we operate. Specifically, we continue to provide professional training, build nurseries, schools and sports centres, and maintain bridges and roads. At the end of 2017 we invested a further $367 million in developing local infrastructure. We used the funds principally to improve facilities for healthcare, education, culture and sports. We built new schools, nurseries, hospitals, roads and public services.

We have never undertaken exploration or development work for hydrocarbons within the boundaries of natural sites on the UNESCO World Heritage list. In May 2019, we formally committed never to do so and officially instated a biodiversity and ecosystem services (BES) policy – this had previously been followed in our operations and constitutes part of our transformation path. We are committed to long-term investment – looking beyond short-term profit priorities to how we can help create a more sustainable planet – as recognised in our new company mission, in turn inspired by the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

In October 2021 KPO was announced among the winners of the 3d Republican Contest “2021 Green Office” that assessed more than 100 organizations. KPO was one of the first subsoil user companies in the Republic of Kazakhstan to support the transition to a "green office" concept including environmental performance monitoring, reporting and environmental training for company's employees.