SAU EcoOil's work has found demand in Latin America.
A press conference was held at KFU to report about the results of the 6th meeting of the Russian-Colombian Commission on Trade, Economic and Scientific Cooperation.
The meeting was held earlier this month and brought several developments. Firstly, Kazan University is now the institution in charge of intergovernmental research cooperation. Secondly, a proposal was put forward to establish the Russian-Colombian Association of Universities with its headquarters at KFU. And thirdly, the University signed an agreement with the Industrial University of Santander.
Vice-Rector Danis Nurgaliev said, «It’s a big event for our university because this is basically the first such success in intergovernmental dealings. Latin America is a new region for us, and there were some apprehensions about how to position ourselves. However, we were met very warmly. One of the areas of cooperation is technology transfer, and we have been given a free hand in that. Colombia and Latin America as a whole mostly possesses heavy oil deposits. SAU EcoOil is engaged in exactly that».
Before the press conference the journalists were given an opportunity to see everything for themselves. They visited the labs and were told about in-situ combustion and catalysts. Colombian oil, as it happens, is very viscous and cannot be transported through a pipeline. KFU can offer “porous” catalysts to decrease that viscosity by orders of magnitude. Ecopetrol has already shown interest and is ready to work together.
Head of SAU EcoOil Mikhail Varfolomeev added, «We discussed details of joint projects with the Industrial University of Santander, in particular, the project on increasing oil recovery ratio. We also held another meeting with Ecopetrol. They showed their specific interest, and we mapped the direction of our future development».
Other areas, such as pharmacy and cosmetology, were discussed. Dr. Nurgaliev added, “Colombia has a rich flora, and we have the wherewithal for studies and tests. We have our Clinic, we have very developed chemical and pharmaceutical clusters, and we are interested in projects on new medications, food supplements, and even cosmetics”.
Academic mobility is another point of interest. This autumn will see about 100 Colombian students arriving to KFU, and this number should rise in the future. And, as was mentioned, another technology transfer tool is the planned oilfield services company, about which Dr. Varfolomeev said the following, “Of course, we are not planning to buy an oil company in Latin America – although that would be a giant step forward. The region has over 50% of world reserves of viscous oils. However, it’s realistic to establish a small services firm. We are approaching this”.
The first cooperation results will be known as early as this summer. We will hear about them during the ThEOR-2017 conference at Kazan University.