Russian giant, Gazprom has pledged to invest US$ 38 billion in the development of the eastern Chayanda gasfield and a pipeline to the Pacific port of Vladivostok. The company plans to spend US$ 24.47 billion on pipeline construction, with the remainder to be dedicated to field development.
Gazprom’s CEO Alexei Miller met with Russian President Vladimir Putin, where Putin is reported to have urged Miller to ensure that the construction work on the pipeline began as soon as possible. Dmitry Peskov, a spokesman for Putin, was quoted as saying, “As a result of the meeting, the president asked Gazprom to finalize all issues and begin construction as quickly as possible.” Miller estimated that the pipeline may be operational by the end of 2017.
The decision to focus on the development of eastern oil and gas infrastructure and exports to Asia comes amidst increasing tension between Russia and its traditional hydrocarbons market: Europe. With the European Commission’s decision to open an antitrust investigation into alleged unfair pricing and the deliberate blocking of supply diversification for 8 EU member states as well as decreased European demand brought about by the global economic downturn, Gazprom has begun to look elsewhere.
Putin was quoted as saying, “We can create another centre orientated to the Asia-Pacific region.” Gazprom has plans to soon be delivering more natural gas to Asia than it now sends to Europe; the company has already signed an MOU with the Japanese Agency for Natural Resources & Energy regarding cooperation between Gazprom and Japanese companies during the construction of an LNG plant in Vladivostok.
Edited from various sources by David Bizley