For the first time Russia publicly discloses data on its national oil and gas reserves

According to the data available as of January 1, 2012, Russia's oil productive capacity was 17,8 billion tons under C1 category and 10,2 billion tons under C2 category. National gas reserves amounted to 48,8 trillion cubic meters under С1 category and 19,6 trillion cubic meters under С2 categoryThese data were presented by Minister for Natural Resources of Russia Sergei Donsky. He explained that it was the first ever official data disclosure after the declassification of information about national reserves in Russia.

In our opinion, such a decision of the Government may imply Russia's intention to introduce the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI)1. The Initiative is intended to enhance investment climate in the EITI countries "by sending a more clear signal to investors and international financial institutions that Russia's Government is committed to ensure better transparency". Companies and investors looking for less political and reputational risks would benefit from the EITI introduction, because it would relieve the administration-related political turmoil which constitutes a threat for investments. In addition, "transparency of payments to the federal budget may also help show a contribution through their capital investments in the country". The civil society would also benefit from the EITI introduction through more information on oil and gas sector's revenues, thereby raising responsibility of the state who manages these revenues in the name of the nationals2.


The EITI includes 39 countries, namely Norway, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Iraq, Indonesia, Peru, Guatemala, etc. One may assume that Russia's disclosure of information about national oil and gas reserves would be a step towards the introduction of EITI in this country3, because domestic companies' investment potential has direct relationship with transparency in the extractive industries, given a special focus of foreign investors on Russia's mineral reserves, according to President Putin.


Kazakova M.V. , PhD in Economics, Head of Economic Development Department


1 The author appreciates the initiator of the Asset Management and Economic Diversification in Mineral Extraction Economies training course held in Baku on July 4 thru 6 2013 for the provision of valuable information about the Initiative.


3 Russia is not yet in the list of candidates to the introduction of EITI ( ).