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    CNPC Boosts Turkmen-China Pipe Capacity


A new compressor station has boosted China's capacity to import Turkmen gas.

by: Dalga Khatinoglu

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CNPC Boosts Turkmen-China Pipe Capacity

The Amu Darya company, established by Chinese National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) for its Turkmen projects, has completed a new compressor station on the Saman-Depe field to boost the capacity of its Central Asia-China pipeline by 6.5mn m3/d (2.4bn m3/yr), the Turkmen government announced Dec.12.

CNPC has invested $7bn in Turkmen projects to date, including development of several fields like Saman-Depe, Bagtyyarlyk and Galkynysh, various gas process units, and three branches of Central Asia-China pipeline (A, B, C) with 55bn m3/yr capacity which pass through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. 'Amu Darya' translates as River Amu which flows through eastern Turkmenistan on its way to the inland Aral Sea.

A state Turkmen oil and gas newspaper says the country has exported cumulatively 200bn m3 to China since starting the flows in end-2009. Recently CNPC chairman Wang Zhongcai said that China has planned 40bn m3 Turkmen gas intake in 2018, about a quarter more than 2017.

China’s total imports from Central Asia - including from Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan - are expected to reach 50bn m3 this year, 38% more than 2017.

China plans to import 65bn m3/yr gas from Turkmenistan by 2021, but that depends on when a fourth branch of Central Asia-China pipeline (D line with 25bn m3/yr capacity) starts up, which would pass through Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. However the start of line D’s construction has been delayed for years and it is not clear when it will begin.

Turkmenistan also plans to resume gas exports to Russia in January 2019, after three years suspension, but only at 3bn m3/yr, one-fifth of what it was exporting in the early 2010s.  Ashgabat also stopped gas deliveries to Iran in January 2017 due to payment delays.

The country has sold about 3bn m3 gas to Azerbaijan, based on a two-year purchase deal begun in October 2016. Azerbaijan stopped Turkmen gas import in October 1, 2018, saying it has no plan to import any more.