West-Siberian oil-and-gas province
Oil was prospected in the West Siberia from the beginning of the XX century. Local people have been finding its discharges on the surface from time to time. Nowadays Ugra is the main oil-and-gas region of Russia and provides 7,3% of the world’s and 50% of the Russian oil production. More than 10 billion tons of “black gold” was recovered from its resources.
The first Soviet prospecting party arrived to Ugra in February 1935. It was led by a 24 year old engineer Victor Vasiljev. He was the first geologist to confirm the presence of natural oil seep on the Ugan river in the Surgut district. 2.5 tons of equipment were delivered to the drilling pad by air. Two more tons had to be hauled by horses, since the nearest railroad ran about 1,000 km away from the prospecting site. The place was just barely accessible and even that only by winter trail. The pioneers had to build their temporary camp under the extreme cold conditions. In his report Vasiljev gave a detailed geological review of the Ugan region together with the description of Maly Atlym and Samarovo villages visited by his party a year before.
All significant postwar changes in the Ugra economy were related to prospecting, exploration and development of oil and gas fields. On 21 September 1953 in Berezovo the prospecting party led by A.G. Bystritsky registered natural gas influx on well R-1 for the first time in Western Siberia. And on 23 June 1960 the team led by a drilling supervisor S. N. Urusov found the first oil in the vicinity of Shaim. Later on Megion, West Surgut, Pokur, Vatinsky, Mamontovo, Salym, Pravdino and many other oil fields were discovered. In 1965 first oil gushed out from the marshland at Samotlor. The unique and world famous Samotlor field ranks first in the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Okrug – Ugra in terms of production volume, it has already produced 2.67 billion tons of oil.
Oil quality in the region is quite high. It may be light ("white oil"), black, but in most cases it is brown. Its characteristics and composition may differ significantly even within one and the same field.
In 2013 255.1 million tins of oil were produced in the territory of the Okrug. 8 new fields were brought into development.
Total gas production in Ugra in 2013 was 33,0 billion m3. This was mostly associated petroleum gas. 2013 APG utilization rate was 91.4%, it is expected that in the near future this rate will amount to 95%. Most of it goes to gas treatment facilities, 8% is utilized by gas turbine and gas generator power plants, 6% is used by the fields for their own needs. 5% of APG is consumed by the Surgut hydro power plant, and a small amount is utilized by the Okrug's municipalities. Owing to its explored and proven raw hydrocarbons resources, production capabilities, industrial infrastructure and oil fields commercial viability Ugra will remain Russia’s main strategic raw hydrocarbons resource base for the next several decades. 475 oil and gas fields have been discovered in the territory of the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Okrug. Total length of the region's pipelines network is 107 thousand km.