Russia has begun operations on its East Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline and the Kozmino port, following four years of construction, to target the Asian market.
Siberian oil is now flowing into the first tanker for delivery to an Asian customer, in Hong Kong, from Russias Pacific coast. In addition to China, supplies will also target Japan and South Korea.
The East Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline and the Kozmino port are worth a combined 420 billion rubles (9.68 billion).
Its a strategic project because it allows us to enter the completely new, growing and promising markets of the Asian-Pacific region, Prime Minister Putin says.
The Kozmino port, near Vladivostok, cost $2 billion (1.38 billion) to build and has the capacity to handle 300,000 barrels of crude per day.
Russian pipeline major Transneftspent another $12 billion to lay the 2,694-kilometre ESPO pipeline through east Siberia to connect the areas greenfields, being developed by oil majors Rosneft, TNK-BP and Surgutneftegaz, to the railway station of Skovorodino. The link has the capacity to carry 30 million tons a year.
Transneft plans to start building the rest of the pipeline to Kozmino, which requires an estimated investment of $10 billion, next year and complete the work in 2014. The effort will bring the links total length to 4,794 kilometres.
When completed, the pipeline will carry eastward an annual 80 million tons of oil from Siberia, including 15 million tons to China through an additional spur. China has loaned $25 billion to Russia in exchange for oil deliveries over the next two decades. Kozmino will increase capacity to 600,000 barrels per day, or 30 million tons per year.