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Rosneft Headquarters, Moscow

OAO Rosneft and ExxonMobil Corp. formed a joint venture for a pilot project to develop tight (shale) oil reserves in Western Siberia, they said this week.

Rosneft holds 51%, ExxonMobil 49%.

Areas of interest are the Achimov and Bazhenov formations.

Joint exploration work for the Achimov will be performed on 17 license blocks, while work on the Bazhenov will be performed on 20 license blocks in the region of RN-Yuganskneftegaz work, the companies said.

ExxonMobil will bring up to $300 million in financing through 2015.

After results are known for the pilot program, Rosneft and ExxonMobil will make a joint decision for large-scale development.

“The joint implementation of the pilot projects will allow the use of ExxonMobil’s experience and technologies in the area of tight oil production and their application to the development of the low-permeability reservoirs in Western Siberia,” said Igor Sechin, Rosneft president and chairman.