Russian government classifies gas and oil production and export statistics

The measure is “temporary” and is designed to “reduce the effect of western sanctions”.

The government of the Russian Federation has decided to stop publishing the official reports regarding the production and export of natural gas and oil until 1 April 2024. Monthly statistical information is classified starting March this year and quarterly statistical information will be hidden from the start of Q1/2023 (reports are normally published with a 1-2 or -3-month delay). 

Last February, the State Duma, lower chamber of the parliament in Moscow, authorized the government to classify any information it considers sensitive or inappropriate to share with the public and especially with Russia’s “enemies”.

Until now, independent analysts and international institutions were able to assess the state of the Russian economy thanks to the data from Rosstat, Russia’s statistical agency.

In spite of its low credibility and suspicions that the Russian authorities have rigged the data, nonetheless the official information could give some insights about how badly the sanctions hit Russia.

Oil and gas account for 85% to 90% of Russian exports. In 2022, the gas exports were down by more than 25% to 184.4 billion cubic meters. The total gas production in that year was 673.8 billion cubic meters, according to official statistics. The oil exports grew by 7.6% to 272 million metric tons, compared with the total output of 535.2 million metric tons. 

In the summer of 2022, Russia also classified the information about its gold and currency reserves.