Russia would welcome private investment in pipelines network

Apr 29, 2004 02:00 AM

Russia would welcome private investment in its oil and gas pipeline network but it still should remain under state control, President Vladimir Putin said.

The Russian government traditionally has insisted on ownership and operator rights for all energy export pipelines, viewing it as a key lever for regulating the supply of oil and gas to global markets and ensuring a proper tax collection from the oil companies.
"At the moment, I consider that there are no grounds for the state to give up its control over pipeline transportation," Putin was quoted as saying during a trip to the Far North city of Salekhard. "But this does not hinder private investment, which will be welcomed."

However, some companies complain that the pipelines are run as a monopoly by the Transneft state company, which owns Russia's oil pipeline network, and the Gazprom state-controlled natural gas company, which owns the gas network.

Source: AP
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