Russia plans to sign a 30-year gas supply contract with China via the western route, Russian energy giant Gazprom’s CEO Alexei Miller told President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday. The route to supply gas to China via western Siberia may be implemented faster than the eastern route, through which Moscow has agreed to ship the fuel to its Asian neighbor in May.
“Gazprom plans to sign a contract to supply China with 30 billion cubic meters of natural gas via western route over thirty years,” Miller said.
The China-Russia West Route natural gas pipeline project connects gas deposits in Western Siberia and the northwestern part of China via Russia’s Altai region, securing the world’s top energy user a major source of cleaner fuel.
The potential of this route is “enormous”, the Gazprom CEO told the Russian President.
“It is even greater than in Eastern Siberia and, without a doubt, we can increase the volume of gas supplies very quickly via the western route, depending on the growth in demand in the Chinese market,” said Miller.
Gazprom is to sign the 30-year contract with China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) in November. The deal will directly link Russia’s huge gas fields to Asia’s booming market for the first time.
Miller also said Gazprom might consider more than doubling the volume of supply.
“We plan to sign a contract for a volume of 30 billion cubic metres for 30 years, though the talks have also looked at other figures for new contracts concluded for the western route. We are looking at the possibilities for supplying 60 billion cubic metres or up to 100 billion cubic metres of gas to China,” Miller told Putin in Moscow.
China and Russia signed a $400-billion gas supply deal in May this year, opening up a new market for Moscow as it risks losing European customers over the Ukraine crisis.
The Russian part of the joint venture pipeline, officially dubbed “Power of Siberia”, will be built by Gazprom with a total investment of $55 billion.
Construction of the China- Russia East Route natural gas pipeline started this month in this eastern Siberian city of Yakutsk.
Source: The BRICS Post