Vietnam and Russia last week agreed to extend their VietsovPetro joint venture cooperation for two more decades.
Under the agreement signed between the two governments on December 27 in Hanoi, the two countries will continue their collaboration in oil and gas exploration and exploitation on Vietnam's continental shelf within the VietsovPetro framework until 2030.
The current agreement, signed in July 1991, is due to expire at the end of 2010.
VietsovPetro is owned by Russia's state-run Zarubezhneft and Vietnam's state-run PetroVietnam with each side holding half of stake. Under the new arrangement, PetroVietnam will hold a 51 per cent stake, with the Russian firm holding 49 per cent.
"The new agreement [on the joint venture's operation] marks a new development stage of the strategic and traditional relationship between the governments of Vietnam and Russia," Minister of Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang said.
"The Vietnamese government has been always creating the most favourable conditions for the investment operation of Russian enterprises here in Vietnam, of that energy cooperation is very important," Hoang stressed.
Alexander Mikhaylov, head of Zarubezhneft's representative office in Vietnam, said the joint venture would continue its exploration and exploitation activities in Block 09-1.
"We will focus our operation in Vietnam's continental shelf and also expand to Russia and other third countries," Mikhaylov told VIR.
VietsovPetro's crude oil production is expected to reach 6.4 million tonnes in 2010, equal to nearly 43 per cent of Vietnam's total crude oil output for the whole year.
The joint venture's total revenue is expected at $3.99 billion this year, 25 per cent higher than last year's figure.
It targets to maintain its annual output at no less than six million tonnes of crude oil, 1.4 billion cubic metres of gas and 270,000 tonnes of condensate during 2011-2015.
Energy development cooperation will be a major focus between Vietnam and Russia in the future, which was agreed by the two countries' leaders during their high-ranking meetings this year.
In July 2010, the two countries also committed to boost energy relation with a focus on the acceleration of crude oil of their RusVietPetro joint venture, which is also owned by Zarubezhneft and PetroVietnam.
The joint venture including 51 per cent of its investment capital owned by Zarubezhneft and the rest belonging to PetroVietnam started oil generation in September, 2010 in Russia's Nenets autonomous district.