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Following newly elected Burmese President Thein Sein’s decision to halt the Myitsone dam hydroelectric project on the Irrawaddy River, Burmese activists now want him to shelve the $1.5 billion Shwe natural gas and oil pipeline project.
The Shwe Gas Movement activists want a cessation to work on the Shwe natural gas pipeline, which is backed by China.
The Shwe natural gas and oil pipelines, with a completion date of 2013, will transit Burmese crude oil and natural gas from Burma’s Arakanese coast to China's Yunnan province. The dual 620 mile-long oil and gas pipelines will pass through more than 20 Burmese townships.
The natural gas will be produced from Burma’s offshore Shwe gas fields in the Bay of Bengal, with oil to be offloaded from Middle Eastern and African tankers in Arakan port, which will then be pumped to a Chinese refinery in Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan, Dhaka-based Arakanese democratic activist Narinjara website reported.
The pipelines are projected to supply around 12 million metric tons of crude and 12 million cubic meters of gas annually to China. The project is a joint venture of Beijing-owned China National Petroleum Corporation and Burmese regime owned Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise, and if completed, is expected to produce about $1 billion in foreign-exchange annually to the Burmese government for the next three decades.
By. Joao Peixe, Deputy Editor OilPrice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com