Russia, Turkmenistan revise gas contract

Russia and Turkmenistan have agreed to new terms on gas trade while their presidents, Dmitry Medvedev and Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, signed a broader agreement on strategic energy cooperation.

Eric Watkins
OGJ Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 23 – Russia and Turkmenistan have agreed to new terms on gas trade while their presidents, Dmitry Medvedev and Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, signed a broader agreement on strategic energy cooperation.

Turkmenistan sells gas to Russia under the 25-year Interstate Cooperation Agreement signed on Apr. 10, 2003.

Under the revised contract, Russian purchases of up to 30 billion cu m/year of Turkmen gas—about two-thirds the level of recent years—will resume Jan. 1, under a price formula based on the European gas market.

Medvedev said it will be the first link of Russian purchases of Turkmen gas to European prices.

Deliveries of Turkmen gas to Russia ceased 9 months ago after the rupture of the main Turkmen export pipeline. Turkmenistan blamed Russia for the incident, which came amid pricing disputes.

The energy-cooperation agreement will cover joint pipeline construction, according to a senior Russian official.

Earlier this month, Turkmenistan signed a long-term agreement for the supply of gas to China. At the time, Russia’s Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said the agreement would not upset relations between his country and Turkmenistan (OGJ Online, Dec. 7, 2009).

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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