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In the Far East there are still a lot of "white spots"

In the Far East there are still a lot of "white spots"

General Director of OJSC Rosgeologia Roman Panov on the Strategy for the Development of the Geological Industry of the Russian Federation for the coming years and how the sanctions against Russia may affect the exploration industry.

- Roman Sergeevich, the media reported that "Rosgeology" is going to be turned into a state corporation. The government has agreed to transfer to the balance of 10 state enterprises worth 1,3 billion rubles. What is this for? And how will the development of the company?

- I can not comment on the entry of companies into the holding company until the Decree on their transfer to the balance of Rosgeology is signed. However, when preparing the Development Strategy until 2020, we calculated various scenarios and came to understand that further consolidation of state exploration assets on the balance sheet of Rosgeology would be absolutely logical.

"Rosgeology" in the coming years, it is necessary to ensure a significant increase in the performance of government orders, expand the scope of work in the service market, initiate the implementation of proactive search projects in order to attract private investment and increase exploration during the early stages of geological exploration of mineral resources. High-tech and high-tech geological exploration carried out by the company must be provided with a functional scientific and applied character.

For the successful implementation of the goals and objectives, the share of OAO Rosgeologiya in the geological exploration market by 2020 should grow at times. Moreover, it is most important to achieve this indicator due to the high-tech market share, use of the most up-to-date innovative technological and technical methods for integrated geological study of subsurface resources.

To accomplish this task, the further consolidation of state assets, in particular, the scientific, practical and research profile, and also the geophysical one, would significantly contribute to the holding's holding. A number of such enterprises, for which entry into "Rosgeology" would be advisable, are included in the "Forecast Plan of Privatization for 2014-2016 Years". We have prepared justifications for transferring them to the authorized capital of the holding. As a result, we plan that on the basis of "Rosgeology" 63 geological enterprises will be consolidated. Such a set will allow to achieve the maximum integral result from the merger, provide a comprehensive work, will enable to increase the efficiency of the use of fixed assets and optimize management costs.

"A package of amendments to the subsoil law is now being prepared, and these amendments provide for so-called" cross-cutting "licenses, when a company exploring subsoil and conducting geological exploration receives the right to extract. Will the adoption of the initiative facilitate the development of the industry?

- I think it would be fair if the company, having incurred expenses for preparation and formation of primary information on subsoil plots, would have the opportunity to return the invested funds. Therefore, we consider logical the mechanism for granting licenses on the application principle to the discoverers of deposits on a non-competitive basis and support the idea of ​​its implementation. This would stimulate the development of junior business, increase the interest of investors in geological exploration and, ultimately, serve as a permanent replacement of the mineral and raw materials base of our country.

- In June, at the parliamentary hearings, you spoke, highlighting the Strategy for the Development of the Russian Geological Industry. What, in your opinion, are the basic principles of its development?

- The strategy for the development of the geological industry of the Russian Federation until 2030 involves the transfer of domestic geological exploration to a qualitatively new level, both in terms of technologies and in terms of the volume of growth in geological information. As a result of its implementation, the knowledge of the territory of Russia, its continental shelf and water areas of the inland seas should increase by 2015 to 45%, by 2020 - up to 50%. As for the territories of our country, subject to the influence of hazardous geological processes and phenomena, by 2015 their knowledge should increase to 55%, and by 2020 - up to 60%.

Also, an increase in the volume of financing should be ensured from extra-budgetary sources due to an increase in the investment attractiveness of geological exploration in relation to the level achieved in 2015 by 20%, in 2020 - by 40%. This is also an important aspect.

"Rosgeology" is the most important tool for implementing the Strategy. Holding can be not only the main contractor for studying the territory of our country, but also an institute for the development of the industry, through which it is possible to implement both projects within the framework of public-private partnerships, and also to help the development of junior business.

- Roman Sergeevich, can sanctions against Russia adversely affect the exploration industry?

- The exploration industry (as well as the service business in Russia) for the last 20 years fell under strong dependence on companies with foreign capital participation. Without reliable geological information, effective investment in the development of the extractive sector is impossible. The price of erroneous decisions taken on the basis of incomplete or substandard research can be expressed in hundreds of billions of rubles. Realizing this, the US and China have in fact closed the domestic markets for foreign geophysical companies, while Russia's Schlumberger, Halliburton, Baker Hughes, Weatherford and others are actively operating. And from year to year, they expand their presence by absorbing core Russian or joint ventures. If the share of foreign players in the domestic market in 2000 year was only 5%, then in 2012. - already 27%, and in the absence of proper counteraction, for example, in the form of the formation and development of the state geological exploration holding Rosgeologiya, the growth of the foreign presence may lead to a loss of control over 2020-50% of the exploration market occupied by foreign concerns. The extracting complex accounts for most of our country's GDP, geological exploration provides opportunities for its normal functioning. Therefore, it is so important to bring the industry to a new level in Russia. Rosgeology can become a center for the development of geological exploration and related technologies in our country.

- You work with the Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO. What is the work?

- In May, within the framework of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, we signed an agreement on cooperation with the Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO. The document provides for joint work to develop human resources for educational, scientific and innovative activities to solve science-intensive tasks of the geological industry. We are considering the issue of creating a geological exploration work on the basis of the business school of the Department of Innovative Technologies and developing non-traditional and difficultly extractable hydrocarbon reserves (NTRIZ). For the holding, as the coordinator of the center for the study and development of such hydrocarbons at the Ministry of Natural Resources, this direction is a priority. The document also presupposes the interaction of Rosgeology with the Energy Center of the Skolkovo Business School, which in future will allow the implementation of a number of joint projects to develop innovative technologies for the profitable development of NTRIZ. One of them is a geo-information project of integration of geological-geophysical and field information on such hydrocarbons.

- How can you assess the state of exploration in the Far East? To effectively develop the mineral and raw materials base, personnel, good equipment, well-coordinated work are needed. Can we boast of this?

- At present, the Far East is not sufficiently explored from the geological point of view. And it is here, as well as in Eastern Siberia, that truly significant discoveries can be made. There are such prospects, there are still a lot of "white spots" here. The region is very significant from the point of view of development of the country's mining complex, now such an understanding exists at the state level, so there is a trend towards increasing funding for geological exploration of the region. Regions of the greatest capacity of the market for exploration are today - the Urals, Siberian, Far Eastern, Volga federal districts and the shelf. If you look at the statistics of financing geological exploration of recent years, the Far East accounted for about 13% of disbursed funds, to Siberia - 15%, 23% - to the Urals, 9% - to the Volga region. In the future, the trend should still shift only to increase the financing of geological exploration in the Far East and Eastern Siberia. Particular attention is paid to these regions within the framework of the state program "Economic and Social Development of the Far East and the Baikal Region for the period up to 2018" (decree of the Government of the Russian Federation from 29 March 2013 No. 466-p), and in accordance with the priorities formulated in the Minutes of the meeting of the Government Commission for the Social and Economic Development of the Far East from 24 October 2013 No. 1 (Komsomolsk-on-Amur), in the list of instructions of the President of the Russian Federation and following the results of the budget message to the Federal Assembly 12 December 2013 on the accelerated development of the mineral resource base, the expansion of geological exploration in such a region strategically and geopolitically important for the Russian economy.

- What are the goals and objectives of the holding in the Far East for today (are you present in all regions except for Yakutia and the EAO)? How many companies do you have in the Far Eastern Federal District? Are there unprofitable ones? And if so, what are the plans for their withdrawal from the crisis situation?

- Rosneologiya has 7 companies in the Far Eastern District: Primorgeology, Magadangelology, SakhGRE, Amurggeology, Dalgeofizika, Kamchatgeologiya, Georegion. At the same time, a number of other enterprises implement separate projects related to geological prospecting in the given territory. Wear of equipment from companies is quite high, fixed assets need modernization, there are certain personnel problems. Particular attention to enterprises of the Far East, we intend to give in the implementation of the Holding's Development Strategy.

- At the end of May JSC Primorgeology (Vladivostok) started the summer field season 2014 year. In what areas is geological exploration and can we talk about success? (Searches for copper-porphyry ores, rare earth metals, tin, lead, tungsten, gold, silver, copper)?

- The final conclusions on the prospects of each individual object can be done upon completion of work on it, all data will be displayed in the geological reports that we provide to Rosnedra upon the execution of the contract. I can say that in Primorye there are interesting objects for tin, lead, tungsten, gold, silver, copper. But in order to confirm their prospects for industrial development, it is necessary to conduct a sufficient number of studies.

- What research is a priority in other regions of the Far Eastern Federal District?

- We are carrying out a number of projects on drawing up geological maps of the new generation, creating geological bases for determining the prospects of the territories for various types of minerals. The Far Eastern Federal District can be called the most promising in Russia from the point of view of replenishing the mineral and raw materials base: both from TPI and hydrocarbons. In the Far Eastern region there is a huge number of zones for potential industrial development, it is necessary to identify those that, in their economic characteristics, will be preferable to others, where maximum synergy from complex development will be observed. For this, it is necessary to carry out a large volume of geological prospecting.

- How likely is it that in the north of Kamchatka there will be geological prospecting for gold and silver exploration?

- At the moment, we are working on Tkapravayamskaya Square in the Karaginsky district in the north of the Kamchatka Territory. The result should be a modern geological basis, which will assess the prospects of the territory for gold, silver, hydrocarbons and other minerals. By the end of 2016, we will finish the work under the contract, then recommendations will be given on setting further geological exploration and prospecting works at the site.

- How is the implementation of the environmental program on the islands of the Franz Josef Land Archipelago, the contractor for the implementation of which is Rosgeology? In the course of the work, more than 60 thousand tons of waste were identified, which must be liquidated. How is this going?

- This year we started the third stage of cleaning the islands of the Franz Josef Land archipelago. Each stage involves the removal from the islands of 8 thousand tons of waste. Every year, we overfulfill this plan. We expect that the 2014 season will not be an exception. While the work is going on in a planned manner. The program to clean up the Arctic Ocean was launched by Vladimir Putin at the First International Arctic Forum "Arctic - Territory of Dialogue" in 2010. Three years have passed and we see that the program is really working and the effect is colossal. The Arctic is very sensitive to pollution, as the mechanisms of biological purification in a cold climate are very slow. The study of environmental problems and the development of technologies for their solution is an important block in the work of the holding Rosgeology.

- Do you have agreements on cooperation in exploration projects with the companies of Rosneft, Gazprom and LUKOIL?

- Yes, we are already implementing some projects, we are on the stage of discussion on certain projects. For example, for Gazprom, we are currently working to identify potentially promising sites for geological exploration to build underground gas storage facilities in the sedimentary cover of the East Siberian and Far Eastern regions.

- Are state orders for Rosgeology still the main source of work?

- "Rosgeology" was created to fulfill the tasks that the state is setting. This is our main priority, and in the future we intend to only increase the amount of work carried out within the framework of state contracts. However, we have also seriously intensified our work with the business over the past year, our portfolio of orders is also growing at the expense of the private sector.

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