Kazakhstan Eyes Export Boom
Kazakhstan’s state-run KazMunaiGas (KTG) has launched three compressor stations to boost domestic supplies and to double exports to China, it said November 29.
KTG said that one compressor became operational on the Beineu-Bozoi-Shymkent gas pipeline to increase supplies in the south of the country while stations 5 and 7 were launched on the third Central Asia-China pipeline (Line C), bringing capacity up a quarter to to 25bn m3/yr.
Currently the total capacity of the three central Asia-China pipelines (A, B and C) pipelines stands at 55bn m3/yr, the company said. The parallel pipelines deliver Turkmen, Uzbek and Kazakh gas to China.
KazTransGas, owned by KTG, concluded a 5bn m³/yr gas export contract with China for the current year, but Kazakhstan says it would double its exports to China next year. Kazakhstan and China have not signed a new gas deal but installing the new compressors in line C allows 10bn m3/yr Kazakh gas flow to China.
A year ago CNPC said the three lines had so far delivered 200bn m3 to China since exports began. That has now reached 250bn m³, says KTG. According to BP statistics, Kazakhstan exported 1.1bn m3, Turkmenistan 31.7bn m3 and Uzbekistan 3.4bn m3 (36.2bn m³ in total) to China in 2017. Last year China imported also 3.3bn m3 from Myanmar. So KTG’s claim of a 50bn m3 gas flow from November 29, 2017 to the same date in 2018 shows significant growth in Central Asian gas exports to China in the current year.
China increased its gas imports by a third to 72.06mn metric tons in the first 10 months of 2018, of which 30.48mn mt (42bn m³, compared with 39.6bn m³ in the whole of 2017) was pipeline gas. LNG imports though have risen by 43% year-on-year.