CPC Pipeline Expects 2010 Shipping Volumes At 2009 Level

CPC Pipeline Expects 2010 Shipping Volumes At 2009 LevelMOSCOW (Dow Jones)-The Caspian Pipeline Consortium, which pumps oil from Kazakhstan to the Black Sea, expects shipping volumes to stay at 2009 levels until it completes a boost in capacity in 2014, the consortium said Wednesday.

The Chevron Corp.-led (CVX) CPC group said Monday it increased 2009 shipments through the Novorossiysk terminal by almost 10% compared with a year earlier to 34.6 million tons of oil.

Last month, it announced plans to boost the capacity of the 1,580-kilometer pipeline to 67 million metric tons a year by 2014 as part of a $4.5 billion expansion program.

“We don’t plan significant raising of pumping rate before finishing the expansion project in 2014,” a spokesman for the consortium said Wednesday.

The CPC said the increase in 2009 shipments were due to a high level of technical capability, and a minimum of stoppings caused by the weather and illegal tappings.

“Another important reason is [higher] volumes of crude provided by our shippers,” he said.

The CPC consortium also includes Russia’s OAO Lukoil Holdings (LKOH.RS) and OAO Transneft (TRNFP.RS), Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), Kazakhstan’s KazMunaiGas, Italy’s Eni SpA (E) and Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSA).