The Astana Times – Oil production in Kazakhstan increased by 14 percent over the year with daily production reaching 1.7 billion barrels of oil, according to the latest report published by energyprom.kz.
Kazakhstan produced 6.7 million tons of crude oil in January, 14.2 percent more than a year earlier.
By region, the largest volume of production is in the country’s Atyrau Region which is rich with hydrocarbon reserves – 4.6 million tons, an increase of 23.4 percent. After Atyrau, there are the Mangistau Region – 1.4 million tons, and the Aktobe Region – 395,500 tons. The regions are home to some of the biggest oil fields and the large oil companies operating in them – the North Caspian Operating Company, Tengizchevroil, Embamunaigas, Karazhanbasmunai, Mangistaumunaigas, and Karakudukmunai.
In total, between January and December 2021, the enterprises produced 73.7 million tons of crude oil.
According to Worldometers data, Kazakhstan ranked 18th out of 127 countries in terms of daily oil production in 2022. The leaders in the ratings are the United States, Saudi Arabia and Russia.
Among CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries, Kazakhstan is second only to Russia. Azerbaijan produces 843.5 million barrels of oil, Turkmenistan – 266.4 million barrels, Uzbekistan – 71.5 million barrels, Belarus – 32.6 million barrels, Kyrgyzstan – 972,000 barrels, Tajikistan – 173,000 barrels.
Oil and gas are among Kazakhstan’s key exports. In this period, the country exported 65.7 million tons of crude oil worth US$31.1 billion. Only 131,600 tonnes of crude oil worth $54.6 million were exported to the CIS region, primarily Russia and Uzbekistan.
Another 65.6 million tons of crude oil worth $31 billion were exported to other countries. Italy, the Netherlands, France, China, and Turkey top the list of Kazakh oil importers.
The prices for oil have been dynamic as well. The ongoing military confrontation between Russia and Ukraine and the Western sanctions imposed on Russia, including the U.S. ban on Russian oil and gas imports, sent oil prices soaring. At the moment, Brent’s price stands at US$113, while WTI (West Texas Intermediate) reached above US$110 per barrel.
“Unfortunately, neither the rankings nor high oil prices helped maintain the exchange rate of the tenge, which collapsed after the beginning of Russia’s attack in Ukraine,” said the experts.
The Kazakh tenge is closely tied to the Russian rouble, which plunged to its record low losing nearly half of its value since the beginning of this year, according to Reuters. The Kazakh tenge followed a similar trajectory, losing six percent of its value. It is now traded at 510.84 tenge on average per U.S. dollar.
“At the beginning of the month, both external and internal factors were quite favorable for the national currency,” said National Bank Deputy Chairwoman Aliya Moldabekova. “Before the aggravation of the geopolitical situation amid rising oil prices, as well as on the eve of the period of quarterly tax payments by exporters to the budget, tenge strengthened to 426.10 tenge per U.S. dollar as of Feb. 10.”
The National Bank has been carrying out a US$198.9 million currency intervention since Feb. 21 to support tenge.