Energy Minister Jurabek Mirzamakhmudov told during the Tashkent Investment Forum that Uzbekistan’s gas production is expected to see positive growth starting in the second half of 2023.

As we reported earlier, during the first quarter of the year, gas production fell by 9.6% compared to the same period last year, amid which the country imported $151.2m worth of gas in March. The head of the Energy Ministry confirmed the decline and attributed it to “various factors, including man-made ones”.

“There was an emergency shutdown at one of the facilities the other day, which caused the daily production to drop by 2 million cubic metres,” he said.

Uzbekneftegaz structures contributed most to the drop in production because “75−80% of the company’s fields have already been depleted”, he said.

“We are now working out measures and discussing with each company how to increase production,” he said. From the second half of the year, this dynamic will change," he said.

Jurabek Mirzamakhmudov said that the situation in the gas sector is “under special control”, and at the expense of forthcoming measures, including investments in the sector, it is planned not only to increase production but also to increase gas production in comparison with the previous year. At the same time, he did not name the projected production volumes.

Earlier, we detailed which companies are operating in Uzbekistan’s oil and gas fields. In response to an investigation by Radio Ozodlik, the Energy Minister said that Uzbekneftegaz owns 118 of 294 oil fields (40%), and foreign companies are working on 176.

As of 1 January 2021, Uzbeknetfegaz had the largest proven reserves, 934.1 billion cubic metres of gas (50 percent of current reserves). “Lukoil operated 413.1 billion cubic meters (22.1%) of gas reserves, Uz-Kor Gas Chemical 109.6 billion cubic meters (5.9%), Surhan Gas Chemical 106.6 billion (5.8%) and Jizzakh Petroleum (now Saneg) 84.9 billion cubic meters (4.5%). Uzbekneftegaz also accounted for most of the production.