Societatea Națională de Gaze Naturale Romgaz SA Mediaș (SNGN Romgaz SA) or simply Romgaz is the largest natural gas producer in Romania and one of the largest in Eastern Europe. The company is responsible for producing around 40% of the total natural gas consumption in Romania. Its majority stockholder is the Government of Romania, which owns 70.01%. Fondul Proprietatea owns 14.99%, while the remaining 15% is owned by various shareholders.
|Traded as||BVB: SNG|
|Virgil Metea, CEO|
|Revenue||US$ 1 billion (2009)|
Number of employees
The company is specialised in geological research for the discovery of hydrocarbons, production, storage, commercialization and the supply of natural gas and natural gas condensate. Romgaz is structured into six branches: two production branches located in Târgu Mureș and Mediaș, one underground storage branch located in Ploieşti, a special operations branch located in Mediaş, a maintenance branch located in Târgu Mureș and one international office located in Bratislava, Slovakia.
On the present-day territory of Romania, the first natural gas deposit was discovered in 1909, in Sărmăşel, Mureş County (then in Austria-Hungary), further to geological researches on potassium salts. The first gas production was used to power the steam boilers in Sărmăşel and the gas lighting of the alleys in Bazna resort. The first gas transmission pipeline was built in 1914 covering the 55 km (34 mi) between Sărmăşel and Turda, with the last being the first city in Europe to have public street lights fuelled by natural gas in 1916. In 1927 the first natural gas compression station in Europe was built in Sărmăşel. Following the successful gas discovery many foreign companies started to prospect the territories including American, British, French and Austria-Hungarian companies. The American success in the exploitation and usage of natural gas determined the foundation of Societatea Maghiara de Gaz Metan UEG (Hungarian Methane Company) by the Hungarian Ministry of Finances and Deutsche Bank whose scope of activity was the exploration, exploitation, transmission, distribution and use of natural gas in certain regions within Transylvania. A prodigious period followed for the gas distribution business and the year 1941 marks the construction of the first natural gas pipeline from Măneşti to Bucharest, while the following year a main pipeline is built for the transportation of natural gas from Transylvania to the capital city. After the unification of Transylvania and Romania in 1919 the Direcția gazului natural company is established at Cluj Napoca affiliated to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce in Bucharest, which later in 1925 was renamed to Societatea Națională de Gaz Metan SONAMETAN (National Methane Company). The first underground storage facility was operated in 1961, and in 1976 the company's largest natural gas output was realised 29.8 cubic kilometers. In 1991 the company is renamed as Regia Autonomă Romgaz RA and in 1998 it is renamed as Societatea Națională de Gaze Naturale Romgaz SA. In the year 2000 Romgaz is divided into five smaller independent companies: Exprogaz, Depogaz, Transgaz, Distrigaz Sud and Distrigaz Nord. In 2001 Exprogaz and Depogaz merge to create SNGN Romgaz SA the current company.
The production and storage of natural gas is realised by around 3,600 rigs and 20 compression stations. Romgaz owns a total of 153 commercial reservoirs located in Transylvania, Moldavia and Muntenia with around 75% or 114 being located in Transylvania especially in Mureş and Sibiu counties. The company produced in 2009 5.76 cubic kilometers of natural gas and expects a 5% decrease in production for 2010 to around 5.65 cubic kilometers. The company operates several large natural gas fields like Bazna, Brodina, Copşa Mică, Deleni, Filitelnic, Grădiştea, Laslău Mare, Mamu, Roman-Secuieni, Şamşud, Sărmaşel, Sighişoara and Zau de Câmpie with combined reserves of 4.351 TCF (112 km³).
Romgaz also operates six underground storage facilities with a combined capacity of 2.76 cubic kilometers. The storage facilities are located in Sărmăşel and Cetatea de Baltă in Transylvania, Bilciurești, Bălăceanca, Urziceni and Ghercești in Southern Romania. The company also owns other storage facilities in joint-ventures with other companies like Depomureş in Târgu Mureş and Amgaz in Nadeș. The largest of the six storages is the Bilciurești facility located 40 km (25 mi) North - North - West of Bucharest having a storage capacity of 1.3 cubic kilometers in one cycle and it is located at a depth of 2,000 m (6,600 ft).
Romgaz has established partnerships with different companies in a total of 15 petroleum concessions based in Romania. The company has joint-ventures with Wintershall in the exploration and development of the RG 03 Transilvania South Block, with Falcon Oil & Gas in the exploitation of the Brodina and Cuejdiu Blocks, with Amromco Energy in the rehabilitation of 11 gas fields and with Schlumberger for the rehabilitation of Laslău Mare gas field.
In 2008 Romgaz became co-titleholder of petroleum rights and obligations in 3 blocks from Slovakia and 2 blocks from Poland. Romgaz holds 25% interest share in three exploration blocks from Slovakia, namely Svidník gas field, Medzilaborce and Snina, and an interest share of 30% in two blocks from Poland, namely Torzym-Cybinka oil field.
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