Impressions of the Russian Oil Industry
- Noyes D. Smith Jr. (Shell Development Co.)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- July 1961
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 621 - 624
- 1961. Original copyright American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers, Inc. Copyright has expired.
- 6.5.2 Water use, produced water discharge and disposal, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 4.6 Natural Gas, 6.1.5 Human Resources, Competence and Training, 4.2 Pipelines, Flowlines and Risers, 1.10 Drilling Equipment, 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 4.3.4 Scale
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In 1959 the USSR produced approximately 1 billion bbl of crude oil, which corresponds to U. S. production in 1929. In the Soviet seven-year plan, production of petroleum is scheduled to increase to 1.75 billion bbl. The exploration opportunities in the Soviet Union are roughly comparable to those in the U. S. in the late 1920's. With the techniques presently available to them, it appears certain that they will be able to accomplish the exploration objectives of their seven-year plan. In production, the Soviet industry is conservation-minded, maintains pressure by water injection and plans production of a reservoir on 4 per cent a year. Many of their current fields have multiple horizons which have not yet been exploited. Soviet refineries are difficult to compare to those in the U. S. because the interest is primarily in distillate production rather than in gasoline production. Their equipment is inferior to modern U. S. equipment but is satisfactory for their present demands. The Soviet Union is presently short of pipeline and storage facilities, but a special effort has been undertaken to supply these. The Russians expect to increase their exports of crude petroleum and products, and it is almost certain that they will accomplish their petroleum industry objectives in the seven-year plan. The author's impression was that the people of the Soviet Union are satisfied with their systems of government and economics and are proud of the progress they have made. The people are very poorly informed about the rest of the world, in particular the U. S. Their living standard currently is much below that in the U. S. and Western Europe, although it apparently has risen considerably since World War II.
During the month of Aug., 1960, a group of eight oil men representing various aspects of the petroleum industry in the United States and two technical experts from the U. S. Government visited Russia and its petroleum industry. The delegation was selected by the American Petroleum Institute to represent the U. S. oil industry in an exchange of visits with Soviet petroleum representatives.
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