Natural resources
Russia’s decision to step up Arctic shelf projects depends on the energy market
© RIA Novosti. Alexei Danichev

Russia’s decision to step up Arctic shelf projects depends on the energy market

Russia will step up oil and gas exploration and development projects on the Arctic shelf only when the global oil and gas market improves, said Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak.

"Given the current situation and falling global prices for hydrocarbon products, exploration activity [Arctic shelf hydrocarbon projects] has plummeted compared to several years ago, before 2014. However, we have discovered 19 new deposits," Novak said in an interview with RT.

"If the market improves, we'll definitely consider (…) increasing exploration, drilling and commercial development at these deposits. The Arctic is the future of our oil and gas sector," Novak said.

The Arctic's huge hydrocarbon reserves are estimated at billions of metric tons of oil and tens of trillions of cubic meters of gas, the minister said.