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Production of crude oil and natural gas liquids in the USSR in 1982 averaged 12.26 million b/d. Total gas production reached 17.66 tcf. About 100 new fields were discovered, but apparently none were major finds that could significantly influence production in the country. Conditions for exploration continued to worsen as exploratory drilling produced a larger share of small fields that were located in more remote areas and were characterized by less productive reservoir rocks.
The major gain in oil reserves, as well as in production, was again obtained in West Siberia, although even there exploration encountered a lack of first-class prospects. The major increase in gas reserves came from northern West Siberia and from the eastern Turkmen and western Uzbek Republics. Significant exploration successes were achieved along the periphery of the North Caspian basin in the Kazakh Republic and adjoining regions of the Russian Republic. This basin may become an important producing region in the near future. Successful first finds were also made in the eastern part of the East Siberian platform, where the importance of new oil discoveries is being evaluated. At the same time, the absence of significant discoveries in most basins of the European USSR points to furthe declines in oil production in these old producing regions.
In 1982, the USSR increased its efforts in offshore oil exploration. The Caspian Sea fleet of mobile rigs rose to 6 units. Three mobile rigs were ordered from Finland for exploration in the Barents Sea. Offshore exploration also continued in the Sea of Okhotsk off Sakhalin Island and in the Black Sea. Preparations were made to begin drilling in the Baltic Sea.
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