New oil deposit is being explored on Vietnamese sea shelf

A joint venture established by the Vietnamese Petrovietnam, Russian Zarubezhneft and the Japanese Idemitsu companies has begun geological and seismic research at a new oil deposit in Southern Vietnam. Experts estimate that the deposit located 150m from the Vung Tau (the headquarters of the Russo-Japanese Vietsovpetro joint venture) contains about 50 mln. tons of oil.

According to the Petrovietnam state oil and gas corporation, the research programme will be completed in 2003. Further on, the company will launch the construction of a oil platform.

An cooperation agreement with the 25-year validity period between Petrovietnam, Zarubezhneft and Idemutsu was signed as part of a visit of Russian Vice-Premier Viktor Khristenko to Vietnam. The event took place this January. The Russian company holds 50% of the trilateral company's stake.