Ecologists blame Europe for hindering major Russian gas projects

Sep 24, 2002 02:00 AM

European gas market liberalization and "the unresolved issue of long-term guarantees to gas producers do not allow Russia to forecast the implementation of many ambitious gas projects for gas export to the European countries", the participants in the international round-table conference on the Kyoto protocol said in a message to the State Duma and Russian government.
The conference ended in Moscow earlier on 24 September. The Kyoto protocol's requirement for reducing the emission of greenhouse gases and the objective growth of energy consumption around the world will inevitably push up demand for ecologically cleaner energy resources, including natural gas.

The ecological forum approached the Russian lawmakers and government with a series of proposals for creating domestic incentives to greater natural gas production. They also pointed to the need for the development and adoption of a programme for multistage reform of gas prices till the year 2005.
The message says the gradual rise in gas prices will make it possible for both producers and consumers to adjust themselves to the new price structure on time without excessive losses and to smooth over inflation processes in the country.

The round-table participants also deem necessary speeding up the formation of a competition-based gas market inside Russia and establishing a special tax regime on the production of hydrocarbons.
"The implementation of these proposals will let the Russian oil and gas companies look into the future with confidence and make their contribution to the solution of global ecological problems," the ecological forum said in the message.

Source: BBC Monitoring Former Soviet Union
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