History in Turkmenistan
In February 2008, RWE became the final shareholder in Nabucco Gas Pipeline International GmbH, the owner and operator of the Nabucco Gas pipeline. Like its fellow shareholders, OMV (Austria), MOL (Hungary), Transgaz (Romania), Bulgarian Energy Holding (Bulgaria) and BOTAS (Turkey), RWE holds a 16.7 percent stake in the company.[i] Later that year, RWE and OMV created the Caspian Energy Company Ltd. to explore options for piping gas from the Caspian’s eastern shore to Europe.[ii]
Current Scope of Operations
In April 2009, RWE and the Government of Turkmenistan signed a Memorandum on Long-term Co-operation stipulating that RWE will explore and develop offshore natural gas resources, and work with Turkmenistan to explore transport routes for delivering natural gas to Germany and Europe.[iii] Three months later, in July 2009, RWE and the Government of Turkmenistan signed a Production Sharing Agreement granting the company exploration rights for offshore block 23, which measures approximately 940 square kilometers.[iv] The initial PSA is a six-year agreement, after which time RWE will be granted a 25-year production license, if natural gas reserves are found.[v] In October 2009, RWE Dea opened a branch office in Turkmenistan and was reported to be conducting environmental and 3D seismic studies in preparation for drilling operations.[vi] The head of the new office stated that RWE planned to spend $60-80 million on the exploration of block 23 over a four-year period.[vii] In April 2012, RWE began a 3D seismic study of block 23.[viii] The company plans to drill an exploration well in 2013.
RWE was a “Gold Sponsor” of the 2010 Turkmenistan International Oil and Gas Conference, and is the sole “Gold Sponsor” of the next Turkmenistan Gas Conference, planned for May 2011.