Race for Syrian oil

Bombing, Kurds, Israel…

The restoration of the country’s oil industry will require hundreds of millions of dollars.

The US-led international coalition fires oil wells in Syria on purpose. This is done so that the government of the Arab Republic can not use them. Such a statement was made by Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad.

The head of the department noted that at present a number of oil fields are controlled by various groups, including Kurdish detachments of the “Syrian Democratic Forces” (SDF). However, the country’s leadership does not want anyone “Kurd, Arab or Syrian – to work in the interests of other countries against the interests of Syria,” and intends to return “every centimeter of the Syrian land.”

Experts estimate that several hundred million dollars will be needed to restore the Syrian oil industry, which suffered greatly as a result of the military actions.

As reported BakuToday, at the end of 2017 it was announced the defeat of the terrorist group “Islamic State” in Syria. As Russian President Vladimir Putin noted then, units of the Russian Armed Forces carried out all the tasks set in Syria and made a decisive contribution to the defeat of the most efficient group of international terrorists. However, as Deputy Director of the Department for New Challenges and Threats of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Dmitry Feoktistov stated on May 22, despite the military defeat, the loss of the majority of the territory and the single governing body, the ISIS still retains its potential: still able to commit terrorist attacks, recruit supporters, spread extremist ideology.

The Arab-Kurdish alliance “Syrian Democratic Forces” (SDF) has established control over Syria’s largest oil field Al Omar in the province of Deir ez Zor. This is reported on the official website of the SDF.

The report indicates that government troops are located three kilometers from the field. It is reported that Al-Omar managed to fight off the militants with the help of an international coalition led by the United States.

The oil field in Deir ez Zor was the main source of income for militants of the Islamic state (an organization whose activities are banned in the Russian Federation). According to the Department of New Challenges and Threats of the Russian Foreign Ministry, the militants pumped at least 25,000 barrels per day from the Al Omar and Al-Tanak fields.

At the same time, at the end of September terrorists almost completely destroyed the infrastructure of the large gas fields in Deir ez Zor. In Al Omar, it is completely destroyed.

Earlier, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said that Kurds compete with the army of the SAR for control over the oil-bearing areas. At the same time, Syria will not allow violating its state sovereignty.

Russian senator Alexei Pushkov also stated about the “oil race”. At the same time, he noted that the main battle is yet to come. Nevertheless, as Damascus officially declared, the Syrian government currently controls most of the oil and gas fields.

Syria is aimed at economic cooperation with Russia. At present, the Syrian market is open for Russian companies to come to it. First of all, we are talking about cooperation in the oil and gas sector. This was stated by Syrian President Bashar Assad in an interview with RIA Novosti, published on April 21.

Answering the journalist’s question about the development of Russian-Syrian economic cooperation, Assad said that Syria has its own laws regarding the conclusion of contracts with various companies. The ATS has already begun signing agreements with Russian companies, with some after the recent visit of Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin.

Especially this process became more active after some Western companies began to leave the Syrian market. Assad linked this trend not with security issues, but with politics. According to the Syrian leader, foreign companies began to withdraw from the SAR mainly for political reasons. Therefore, today the market of this country is free for the arrival of Russian companies.

“The most important part for me, and I think that for them too, in the oil sector, oil and gas, and some Russian companies have joined, say, this sector in the past few months, and the process of signing contracts, the final steps of signing contracts are currently under way. This is how I look at it,” – said Bashar Assad.

Recall that in April 2016, Syrian Prime Minister Vail Al-Khalqi reported that Damascus is negotiating with the Russian side and has even concluded several contracts for the restoration of infrastructure, as well as further development of economic cooperation between the two countries in various sectors. Thus, the Russian Federation did not abandon the idea of restoring infrastructure. In this regard, a number of transactions between Russia and Syria were signed, among them agreements worth 600 million euros and 250 million euros.

According to the Syrian Prime Minister, the Ministry of Oil and Natural Resources has strategic projects in the fuel and energy sector, particularly in the field of geological exploration of oil and gas fields on land and on the shelf. They offered cooperation only to friendly states, including Russia.

We are talking about projects in the field of geological exploration onshore in the areas of oil production, geological exploration at sea, as well as projects to develop a number of oil and gas fields in order to increase the average production figures through the use of the latest technologies in this field. This, for example, is the gas field of Balaas. Investments are also expected in projects on the use of excess refining capacity at the refinery in Homs and Baniyas. In addition, Russian-Syrian energy cooperation implies scientific research, data exchange.

“Russian companies are not foreign to the fuel and energy complex in Syria, there are quite a lot of Russian companies in this sector. They have a lot of experience that we need to restore wells and stations destroyed by the IG (an organization whose activities are banned in the Russian Federation) in cooperation with Turkish authorities that attacked what the Russian and Syrian companies built together decades ago,” – said Vail Al-Khalqi.

Also in late 2013 Russia and Syria signed an agreement on the development of offshore drilling in the territorial waters of the Syria. The contract for a period of 25 years was signed with the Russian “Soyuzneftegaz”. Under the agreements, the Russian company undertook to undertake geological exploration work, create the infrastructure necessary to develop the underwater field, and train the personnel to work. It was reported that Soyuzneftegaz took all costs for these works. And this is about $ 90 million. Such cooperation, in fact, gave Russia the key to the Middle East.

As noted later by foreign media, the work of Russian oil workers in Syria was limited by war. The Topwar.ru publiction wrote that it was the oil and gas issue that could be one of the reasons for the growing tensions in the country. Also, the newspaper Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten in September 2016, arguing about the causes of the war in the Syria, noted that the matter is in the most favorable positions in terms of supplies of Middle Eastern energy resources to Europe. According to the publication, intensive battles take place where the most important oil and gas pipelines pass or must pass.