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Russia’s gas giant Gazprom will begin natural gas deliveries to China via the Power of Siberia pipeline ahead of schedule, as early as December 1, 2019, Alexey Miller, Chairman of Gazprom’s Management Committee, has said on a recent visit to China.
The Power of Siberia natural gas pipeline was initially expected to start sending gas to China on December 20, 2019, and its completion is among Gazprom’s top priorities.
After talks in Beijing with officials of CNPC—with which Gazprom has a 30-year contract for the supply of an annual 1.3 trillion cu ft of natural gas via the Power of Siberia pipeline—Miller said:
“Construction of the Power of Siberia gas pipeline is going ahead of schedule, and Gazprom will start delivering gas to China well in advance, as early as December 1, 2019.”
The Power of Siberia gas pipeline will transport natural gas from the Irkutsk and Yakutia production centers to consumers in Russia’s Far East and to China.
Gazprom is dominating gas supplies to many European markets while it also vies to meet the surging Chinese natural gas demand as the country is in the middle of a massive switch from coal-fired to gas-fired heating in millions of homes.
In 2018, China’s natural gas imports—including pipeline and liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports—soared by nearly 32 percent from 2017 to a record 90.39 million tons, solidifying China’s position as the world’s biggest importer of the fuel.
China became the world’s top natural gas importer—including LNG and pipeline—in October last year, overtaking Japan which imports all its gas as LNG.
According to Platts Analytics, China—currently the world’s second-largest LNG importer behind Japan—is set to overtake Japan as the top global LNG importer by 2022 as China will continue to be the largest growth factor behind global LNG demand growth.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.