Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (ADNOC) and the Russian Energy Agency (REA) on Wednesday signed a strategic framework agreement across the oil and gas value chain, ADNOC reported.

According to ADNOC, the deal will enable it to seek opportunities for collaboration with REA in the upstream and downstream sectors and in artificial intelligence (AI). Areas of potential cooperation include Abu Dhabi’s exploration and production concessions, refining, petrochemicals, LNG and marketing, sales and trading, noted the United Arab Emirates (UAE) firm.

“The wise leadership of the UAE and Russia have enabled close and friendly relations between both countries, and ADNOC is taking advantage of this strong bond to build new relationships with partners in Russia that can drive new commercial opportunities as we deliver our 2030 strategy,” ADNOC Upstream Executive Director Abdulmunim Saif Al Kindy said in a written statement emailed to Rigzone.

Al Kindy added the comprehensive scope of the framework, coupled with REA’s capabilities, conveys the message that “ADNOC is ready and willing to engage with value-add partners” to capitalize on mutually beneficial opportunities across the full value chain.

Oleg Valerievich Zhdaneev, head of REA’s Technology Development Division, pointed out the agreement will “foster technical and operational support exchanges” between the two organizations.

“Russia and the United Arab Emirates are among the largest producers and exporters of hydrocarbons in the world,” stated Zhdaneev. “The signing of the agreement with ADNOC creates a long-term foundation for the wide range cooperation in the field of energy in general and the oil and gas sector in particular.”

The REA framework agreement marks the second deal with a Russian partner that ADNOC has reported in as many days. On Tuesday, ADNOC stated that it has awarded Russia’s Lukoil a five-percent share in the Ghasha ultra-sour gas concession. The offshore Abu Dhabi concession includes the Hail, Ghasha, Dalma and other sour gas fields.

Under its deal with ADNOC, Lukoil will initially invest AED 697.3 million (US$190 million) as a signing fee for the concession also held by Eni, Wintershall Dea and OMV, ADNOC noted in a separate written statement. ADNOC projects the Ghasha mega-project to produce more than 1.5 billion standard cubic feet per day of natural gas by approximately 2025 as well as more than 120,000 barrels per day of oil and condensates.

“We are very pleased to partner with Lukoil on this crucial project, which also marks the first time that we partner with a Russian energy company across our full value chain,” commented UAE Minister of State and ADNOC Group CEO Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber.

Lukoil President Vagit Alekperov stated that Ghasha represents Lukoil’s first project in the UAE.

“Lukoil has extensive experience in offshore fields, both independently and in consortia with other major international companies,” Alekperov remarked. “We are glad to enter the project in the UAE with such a significant resource base and with such experienced partners.”