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[ClickPress, Wed Apr 20 2016] We maintain a positive outlook for Kazakhstan's oil production , thanks to huge underground potential and the delayed Kashag a n field expected to come online in 2017 , with the Tengiz project forecast to start production in 2021. Our forecasts for g as and refined products consumption have been revised down for 2016 as economic headwinds impact consumer spending.

Key developments in Kazakhstan's oil & gas industry:

The Kazakh Energy Ministry stated that it had plans to carry out additional evaluation work on Aktoty and Kairan fields, with further exploration work also expected to be done on the Kurmangazy field in 2016.

We expect oil production to be 1.67mn b/d in 2016, with steady increases forecast until 2022. The risks for oil production lie to the upside, with plenty of room for expansion on a number of Kazakhstan's hydrocarbon rich fields.

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We have slightly downgraded gas consumption in 2016 on account of strong economic headwinds. In the longer term, we expect a strong growth trajectory.

Kazakhstan's energy ministry expects Russia to grant exploration rights for the central field of the Russian sector of the Caspian Sea. The original exploration license expired in 2009 and the Russian government at the time did not allow the grant to be renewed.

Kazakhstan's economy will suffer in the low oil price environment, with GDP per capita expected to fall from USD10,881 in 2015 to USD8,299 in 2016. On the back of a weak macro backdrop we have downgraded Kazakhstan's refined products consumption for 2016 from 284,300b/d to 267,750b/d.

We note that overall gas consumption will remain constrained by infrastructure limitations. We highlight downside risk to consumption should government plans for pipeline expansions to connect the producing northwest to other areas of the country not follow through: the size of the country and the relatively unpopulated areas of several regions make these projects challenging economically.

We expect a minor increase in refining capacity in 2017 following the modernisation and upgrading works at the three refineries. Gasoline production will be boosted and lower grade residual fuels production will be reduced. We note upside risk to refining capacity at the tail-end of our forecast period from capacity expansion plans at the Shymkent refinery.

The Kazakhstan Oil & Gas Report has been researched at source and features BMI Research's independent forecasts for Kazakhstan including major indicators for oil, gas and LNG, covering all major indicators including reserves, production, consumption, refining capacity, prices, export volumes and values. The report includes full analysis of industry trends and prospects, national and multinational companies and changes in the regulatory environment.

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