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Lukoil has appointed Russian research institute VolgogradNIPImorneft to design and engineer a winter-ready floating oil production platform for drilling in the Caspian.
"The platform will be ice-proof, as it will be used in the north of the Caspian Sea, which freezes in winter" a Lukoil official tells Argus. The platform is due for completion by 2004, when Lukoil plans to start crude production from the Severny block in the Russian sector of the Caspian. The source says the Astrakhan shipyard may be involved in the rig's construction. Lukoil has also reached a preliminary deal with ABB Lummus to supply components.
In August, Lukoil used its Astra rig to drill …