Times of Oman2
Price in RO
24ct / gm
22ct / gm
Forex Rates vs R01
Back to Homepage
Russia unveils $25b oil pipeline
December 25, 2012 , 3 : 00 am GST
SAVE THIS ARTICLE
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin watches an unveiling ceremony of the second leg of the ESPO oil pipeline live video link from the site in Khabarovsk Pic: AFP
Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday unveiled the final extension of a new $25 billion oil pipeline to the Pacific that underscores the energy power's gradual shift away from stagnant European markets. The East Siberia-Pacific Ocean (ESPO) link is also expected to expand sales to the United States and fulfil Putin's dream of cementing Russia's place as a dominant force on international crude markets.
Moscow hopes to make ESPO into a benchmark in the Asia Pacific region that competes with WTI the US oil standard whose price some traders believe is too heavily based on domestic political factors. But analysts worry that Russia may currently lack enough accessible oil in its underdeveloped East Siberia fields to keep the line fully flowing despite strong demand in China and Japan.
"There is just enough East Siberian for the existing pipeline," said Sberbank Asset Management energy analyst Valery Nesterov. "But expanding this pipeline further would be impossible without West Siberian oil and that oil is already meant to go west," Nesterov pointed out.
Putin brushed those concerns aside as he joined in the ribbon-cutting ceremony by video link from the Far East city of Khabarovsk. "By completing the second leg, our potential is expanding," Putin said in televised remarks. "This is a serious event." The second leg of the 4,200-kilometre (2,600-mile) pipeline runs from fields west of Lake Baikal to the Pacific port of Kozmino near the northeastern edge of China.
The port previously connected to East Siberian oil fields by rail also provides Russia with quick access to Japan and South Korea. But the head of the Transneft state oil pipeline operator said most of the crude from the final leg would in fact be destined for the United States.
"The American market will receive 35 per cent of Kozmino oil," Nikolai Tokarev said at the opening ceremony in comments reported by the company's website. "Around 30 per cent will go to Japan and 28 per cent to China. The rest will go to Singapore, Malaysia and South Korea."
Russia has repeatedly tried and failed to make meaningful inroads on the US oil and natural gas markets. Its gas sales never materialised after the North American shale revolution made both Canada and the United States effectively self-sufficient. Analysts also point out that US oil production is expanding at rates that should soon see the country outpace Russia and Saudi Arabia in the next few years.
"We can only be talking about a few tankers (going to the United States), and only in case if they are profitable," said ATON investment house analyst Vyacheslav Bunkov. But Transneft's Tokarev appeared to be placing his bets on the US as he laid to waste the idea of offering Europe any assurances that the continent could continue to rely on Russian oil.
"We do not owe a single EU country a thing, and we are certainly not obligated to account for ourselves," RIA Novosti quoted Tokarev as saying. "If they (EU nations) want to hold a normal, proper conversation, they should change their approach to such a dialogue."
The pipe's first leg had until now pumped 30 million tonnes (220 million barrels) of oil per year from Eastern Siberia to the Chinese border town of Skovorodino. One half of that oil went along an existing pipeline to the Chinese city of Taishet while the other was transported by tanker car to Kozmino.
The extension will allow Russia to boost output along the first half of the link to 50 million tonnes (367 million barrels) per year. China will continue to receive its 15 million barrels while the remaining 35 million barrels will be distributed among various clients at Kozmino.
Rate this Article
Rates : 0, Average : 0
Post a Comment
Did you like this section? Leave a comment!
Your Name :
Your Email Address :
Your Comment :
Enter Image Text:
No Comments Posted
Latest in this section
AstraZeneca drugs group says profits halved, blames generics
Determined to help control prices, end monopoly: Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Oman eyeing Africa for non-oil exports
Omantel allots 95% shares in its public offer
Omran opens new four-star Crowne Plaza Hotel in Duqm
TOP RATED ARTICLES
India’s Modi ‘overwhelmed’ by mass support in Varanasi
Everyday I tell him that I love him
Susan French/Tony James Features
Petroleum Development Oman’s OMR5.5m pledge for society
A E James
Royal Oman Police urge caution over summer thefts
Fahad Al Ghadani
Royal Oman Police arrests fraudster for defrauding money exchange shop
Times News Service
More in News
More than just a moustache - Adolf Hitler vs Charlie Chaplin
Urban gardens greening Berlin rooftops, airfield
Italian violinist strikes a chord with street children
Tips for writing a good article
How to choose your writing form and communicate your creative thoughts
Natasja Engholm - Special to Times of Oman
More in Features
This is the end of the two-state solution
Indian women target of a vicious campaign
Target the companies that pollute most
Turkey must take the lead role to end conflict in Syria
Attempts to remake Eden are dangerous
More in Columns
Get Top news by E-mail.
Copyright � 2012 Muscat Press & Publishing House SAOC. All rights reserved. Times of Oman is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.
For reprint rights contact:
TOO Online Editorial