Putin and Miller Announce Plans for Eastern Gas Program:

President Vladimir Putin ordered Gazprom’s Alexei Miller yesterday to finalize plans for an Eastern Gas Program and begin construction of two new pipelines in the Far East, Russian newspaper Interfax reports. The new pipeline system will connect the giant Chayanda and Kovykta oil and gas condensate fields near Yakutsk in Eastern Siberia to Vladivostok. “We have come to the next stage of the Eastern gas program – to the beginning of work on developing fields in the Yakutiya and Irkutsk regions, the Chayanda and Kovykta fields,” Interfax quoted Putin at the meeting. Chayanda holds an estimated 1.3 trillion cubic meters (tcm) of natural gas and Kovykta holds approximately 1.5 tcm. Gas reserves will supply domestic demand first, but a new Asia-Pacific export center will also be established, Putin said. Miller announced that the new 3200-kilometer pipeline system will be completed by 2017 and enable Russia to increase LNG supplies to Asian markets, namely Japan and China.

Sources: Interfax, http://www.interfax.ru/business/txt.asp?id=273323 (in Russian)

Ben Priddy
Central Asian Analyst

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