Russia's Transneft launches Purpe-Samotlor pipeline

Russia’s state-owned OAO Transneft reported commissioning of the 430-km, 500,000 b/d Purpe-Samotlor oil pipeline, boosting the country’s export potential.

“The commissioning of the Purpe-Samotlor line allows Russia to react quickly on market situations and diversify crude supplies westward and eastward,” said Russia’s Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko.

The Purpe–Samotlor line forms a section of the Zapolyarye–Purpe–Samotlor oil pipeline that links fields located on the Yamal Peninsula with the East Siberia–Pacific Ocean (ESPO) pipeline (OGJ Online, Sept. 13, 2010).

The new line also connects Russia’s refineries and international markets to fields in northern areas of East Siberia's Krasnoyarsk region and West Siberia's Yamal-Nenets Autonomous regions.

The Purpe-Samotlor line is joined to Russia’s national pipeline network, facilitating the transport of oil into the country’s inland Druzhba pipeline and on to Europe.

The line also can be used to transport oil to export terminals at Primorsk on the Baltic Sea, Novorossiisk and Tuapse on the Black Sea, and into the ESPO pipeline which runs from Taishet in East Siberia to Skovorodino in Russia's far eastern Amur region.

From Skovorodino, Russia then transports 300,000 b/d of ESPO crude by rail to the export terminal of Kozmino on the Pacific Coast, while a further 300,000 b/d goes to China via a 70-km pipeline spur.

Earlier this month, Transneft briefly halted supplies along the ESPO line after a 6.1 magnitude earthquake in the Amur region, some 20 km from Skovorodino. Operations resumed on Oct 14 after a few hours’ delay, with no damage to the line, according to Transneft.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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