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Ceremony held to mark official start of work on Power of Siberia project

By 0 and 0 and 0
29 June 2015


The Eastern Route will supply 38 billion cubic metres of gas every year from 2018. Picture: Gazprom

The official ceremony of the start work on the iconic Power of Siberia project has been held on the Chinese side of the pipeline. While construction has been ongoing since late May, Monday marked the opportunity to celebrate the formal welding of the first joint in front of dignitaries.

The $55billion line, which will send gas along a 4,000km route from the Sakha Republic into China, will be operational in three years’ time.

Among those who attended the event were Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and his deputy Yuri Trutnev, as well as the Minister of Energy Alexander Novak and Alexey Miller, the head of Gazprom. First Vice Premier Zhang Goali, Wang Yilin, the chairman of the China National Petroleum Corporation, and Wang Yilin, general manager of projects in CNPC Pipeline Company U Hong, made up the Chinese delegation.

The Eastern Route will supply 38 billion cubic metres of gas every year from 2018, and when it was first announced the project was seen as a “diplomatic coup” for Moscow. Driving that deal was the need to tap into Yamal gas, including the giant Bovanenkovo Yamal field which was opened in 2012 and now pumps around 40 billion cubic metres a year but can produce up to 140 bcm.

Gazprom has already begun the development of the primary supply base for the Power of Siberia in the Chayandinskoye gas field in Yakutia, and the construction of the pipeline from Yakutia to Blagoveshchensk.

Meanwhile, on Friday at a general meeting of Gazprom shareholders, Mr Miller announced the future Western Route supplying gas to China will be called Power of Siberia 2. All parties are in the process of outlining a timetable for the work on the route, which was previously known as the Altai project, in a bid to move it forward as quickly as possible.

The build-up of Gazprom’s production activities has had a positive effect on the regional economy. In the recent five years the company has invested 10.1 billion roubles (£173million) into the projects in Yakutia, and in 2015 the volume of investments will reach some 42 billion roubles ($722million).

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