Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai has instructed Vietnam Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam) to pursue the strategy to expand oil and gas activities overseas to preserve domestic resources and guarantee energy security in spite of the difficulties and challenges.

At the group’s video conference on January 19, the Deputy PM said Vietnam will experience a shortage in energy and will have to import fuel by 2020. He said therefore it is important to make preparations to meet the increasing domestic demand for energy, which will have great impacts on the country’s socio-economic development and competitiveness.

“In the next decades, energy security will be one of the four most important issues, and the oil and gas sector plays an important role in energy security,” Hai said, adding that PetroVietnam should build a long-term plan for the sector, taking into account the impacts of climate change, to submit to the Party’s Politburo.

Hai also required the group to improve its administrative efficiency, increase productivity, and actively implement its restructuring plan.

According to Director General Do Van Hau, PetroVietnam will focus on coordinating with contractors to increase domestic oil production in 2013.

The group will also accelerate surveys and negotiations abroad to purchase new oil fields and increase oil reserves to 35-40 million tonnes.

In particular, it will speed up mining in new oil fields in Russia and Venezuela .

In 2013, the group will maintain stable operations in Dung Quat oil refinery, start the construction of Nghi Son oil refinery and complete procedures for the Long Son oil refinery project./. VNA