Oil and Gas activities

Exploration & Production

  • Active portfolio management, including expansion of our position in Norway

Europe: The Mittelplate field off the North Sea coast is the cornerstone of our crude oil production in Germany. We own a 50% stake in this field, the largest known oil deposit in the country. At the Bockstedt oilfield, the field test for increasing recovery rates using the biopolymer Schizophyllan was continued.

With the acquisition of shares in the Vega and Gjøa fields in Norway at the end of 2014, Wintershall established itself as one of the largest producers on the Norwegian continental shelf. In March 2015, Wintershall Norge AS took over operatorship of the Vega oil and gas field from Statoil.

We began production in the Knarr field in the Norwegian North Sea in March 2015. We continued work on developing the Edvard Grieg oilfield, and the first volumes were produced at the end of November. At the beginning of September, the Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy approved the plan for development and operation of the Maria field submitted by Wintershall, the field’s operator. The plan involves linking the field to the Kristin, Heidrun and Åsgard B production platforms via subsea ties.

We began production of natural gas at the unmanned L6-B “minimum facility” platform in the Dutch North Sea. This miniplatform is one of a new generation of facilities that can be deployed in especially shallow waters, enabling economic yield from even very small deposits. We ceased the production of crude oil from the Kotter and Logger developments in the Dutch North Sea, as the limited volumes remaining can no longer be produced in an economical manner.

Russia: The Yuzhno Russkoye natural gas field in western Siberia, in which we have a 35% economic interest, has been operating at plateau production since 2009. The first wells were successfully drilled for the development of the Turon horizons, a further formation in this natural gas field. We hold a 50% stake in the development of Block IA of the Achimov formation in the Urengoy field in western Siberia. The gradual development of this field was continued; 62 wells were producing at the end of 2015. We will develop blocks IV and V of the Achimov formation together with Gazprom.

North Africa / Middle East: In Libya, we are the operator of eight oilfields in the onshore concessions 96 and 97. Due to difficult political conditions, we were only able to produce in concession 96 from February to May 2015 and from September to the beginning of November 2015, for a total of 125 days. Operations were able to continue uninterrupted at the Al Jurf offshore oilfield in Libya, in which we have a stake.

In Abu Dhabi, we completed our first exploration drilling as operator in the development of the Shuweihat sour gas field; preparations are underway for a further exploration well. Our activities in Qatar were suspended in May of 2015 with the expiration of the concession license.

South America: We hold shares in a total of fifteen onshore and offshore fields in Argentina. We began two shale drillings as operator in the Vaca Muerta formation in the Neuquén province in March, as stipulated in the joint operation agreement between Wintershall Energía and Gas y Petróleo del Neuquén. In December 2015, we increased our share in the Aguada Federal block – part of the Vaca Muerta formation in the Neuquén province – from 50% to 90%. In Chile, we hold 10% of the San Sebastian block.

For more on current reserves, see:
Exploration & Production
Oil and gas reserves

Capital expenditures




Plateau/peak production per year1



BASF’s share in barrels of oil equivalent (BOE)


Year completed



Development of Vega-Pleyade field

9 million BOE


North Sea, Norway


Development of Knarr field

4 million BOE




Development of Maria field

7 million BOE




Development of Edvard Grieg field

5 million BOE




Development of Aasta Hansteen field

12 million BOE


Siberia, Russia


Achimgaz, development of Achimov horizon in Urengoy natural gas and condensate field

43 million BOE


Natural Gas Trading

  • Gas trading and storage business transferred to Gazprom in asset swap
  • Natural gas transport activities to be continued together with Gazprom

Our natural gas trading and storage activities were transferred to Gazprom with the asset swap completed in September 2015. We will continue our joint activities in the gas transport sector with Gazprom in the Oil & Gas segment, but they will not be separately reported.

As a holding company for the German subsidiaries in natural gas transport, WIGA Transport Beteiligungs-GmbH & Co. KG (WIGA) mainly fulfills a reporting and financing capacity. GASCADE Gastransport GmbH, OPAL Gastransport GmbH & Co. KG, and NEL Gastransport GmbH all act as independent subsidiaries under the umbrella of the holding company. This organizational structure allows us to meet the unbundling requirements set down by the German Energy Act. The widely regulated transport sector is characterized by stable conditions and yields based on approved costs and tariffs.

The companies under the WIGA umbrella operate a 3,300 kilometer long-distance network that includes the pipeline links to the Nord Stream Pipeline, the Baltic Sea Pipeline Link (OPAL) and the North European Gas Pipeline (NEL).

We hold a 15.5% share in the Nord Stream Pipeline through Nord Stream AG, which is accounted for in the BASF Group’s financial statements using the equity method. Other shareholders are Gazprom (51%) and E.ON (15.5%), as well as N.V. Nederlandse Gasunie and GDF Suez (9% each). With a total capacity of 55 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year, this pipeline, which stretches from Russia to the German coast over the Baltic Sea, helps shore up supply security in Europe.

In order to carry out the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project, we signed the contracts in September 2015 to build two additional offshore pipelines through the Baltic Sea. The project will be developed by the company Nord Stream 2 AG. Gazprom holds a 50% share in the project company; BASF/Wintershall, ENGIE, E.ON, OMV and Shell will each hold a 10% share upon approval by the relevant authorities.