China, South Korea and Russia continue talks on gas pipeline

Apr 26, 2004 02:00 AM

Negotiations for a natural gas pipeline from Russia's Eastern Siberia to China and South Korea are likely to conclude in three to four months, TNK-BP president and CEO Robert Dudley was quoted as saying.
TNK-BP, a joint venture of Tyumen Oil and BP, is a major shareholder of Rusia Petroleum, the project's gas supplier. Gas would start flowing from Kovykta field in Russia's Irkutsk province by the end of 2008 as planned, Dudley said.

Currently, negotiations are focusing on the price of the gas, and are being held between Rusia Petroleum, China National Petroleum Corporation and South Korea's Kogas.
The pipeline would carry 20 bn cm of natural gas over an unspecified period to China's north-eastern provinces, while another 10 bn cm would go to South Korea through an undersea pipeline from the Chinese city of Dalian on the Bohai Rim.

The project has yet to receive government approval, which was delayed due to the recent elections in Russia, according to Dudley. However, he added that it was only "a matter of time" before an official announcement was made as governments on both sides were supportive of the project.
He also said "more clarity" on the stalled negotiations surrounding the Sino-Russian oil pipeline would be given soon, though he stressed that it remained a separate issue from the gas pipeline.
($ 1 = 8.3 yuan)

Source: AFX News Limited
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