Russian regional gas producer Arcticgaz, a joint venture between gas giant Novatek and oil producer Gazprom Neft, has freed up its head office in the West Siberian city of Novy Urengoy for conversion into a hospital to treat patients suffering with Covid-19.

SIGN UP FOR OUR NEW ENERGY TRANSITION NEWSLETTER

Gain valuable insight into the global oil and gas industry's energy transition from Accelerate, the new weekly newsletter from Upstream and Recharge.
Sign up here.

The new hospital — which opened its doors last week — will in the first phase of operation have 60 beds for patients that have mild symptoms of the disease.

However, further conversion efforts will eventually see the number of available beds increasing to 300 once oxygen machines are installed and more medical personnel are hired.

Despite being a regional gas-producing centre with a population of about 115,000 people, hosting subsidiaries of Gazprom and other Russian gas producers, Novy Urengoy had just 200 beds available for patients in what was, until now, the city’s only hospital.

The number of registered Covid-19 cases in the Yamal-Nenets region, where Novy Urengoy is located, is approaching 200 per day, according to officially available statistics — a four-fold increased since the summer.

Gazprom’s local gas-producing subsidiary, Gazpromdobycha Yamburg, has delivered bedding materials as well as dozens of hand-held radios to doctors in Novy Urengoi so they can communicate without leaving or entering internal quarantine zones.

Arcticgaz was not the only Russian producer feeling generous in West Siberia recently. Lukoil stepped in to help fund educational and cultural initiatives in the city of Kogalym, where the offices of its key oil-producing subsidiary Kogalymneftegaz are located.

Following a recent meeting in Moscow between Lukoil boss Vagit Alekperov and Khanty-Mansiysk Governor Natalya Komarova, the privately held player has committed to building a music school, a large tropical-plant garden, an ethnographical museum, a planetarium, a hotel and other amenities for local residents and city visitors.

Lukoil earlier sponsored the construction of an oceanarium with a 61-meter underwater tunnel in Kogalym.