Kazakhstan to Boost Gas Transit to Russia on Resumed Supplies

April 16. Bloomberg

By Nariman Gizitdinov

Kazakhstan to Boost Gas Transit to Russia on Resumed SuppliesKazakhstan plans to ship 25 billion cubic meter of gas from Turkmenistan, holder of the world’s fourth-largest natural gas reserves, and Uzbekistan to Russia this year after a pipeline was reopened.

Turkmen gas shipments will probably reach 10.5 billion cubic meters, more than last year, Serik Sultangaliyev, the general director of Kazakh gas pipeline monopoly KazTransGaz, told reporters in Astana, without giving direct comparisons.

Russia agreed to resume gas imports from Turkmenistan in January, ending a nine-month halt in supplies from Central Asia’s biggest producer caused by a pipeline explosion and a slump in European demand. Turkmenistan blamed OAO Gazprom, Russia’s gas-export monopoly, for the pipeline blast in April, saying the company abruptly cut the volumes it was importing.

The existing Central Asia-Center pipeline system links Russia to Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan through Kazakhstan.

Gazprom, the world’s largest producer of the fuel and supplier of about a quarter of Europe’s gas, will buy as much as 30 billion cubic meters a year at market prices, Deputy Chief Executive Officer Alexander Medvedev said on Dec. 22. The company bought about 40 billion cubic meters of gas in 2008.

KazTransGaz plans to charge $1.70 per 1,000 cubic meters for transit and export this year, the company said today in an e-mailed statement, without giving a comparison.