CNPC to fund part of Central Asia-China gas line

CNPC is seeking a $2.5 billion loan from the China Development Bank for a section of the Central Asia-China natural gas pipeline project, according to local media.

Eric Watkins
Senior Correspondent

LOS ANGELES, July 24 -- China National Petroleum Corp. is seeking a $2.5 billion loan from the China Development Bank for a section of the Central Asia-China natural gas pipeline project, according to local media.

Caijing magazine, citing an unnamed company source, said the money would fund construction of the Uzbekistan section of the pipeline, expected to finish in 2009.

The source said CNPC had to borrow money to help ease funding pressures caused by policy reasons. He did not detail the policies or reasons.

Plans call for the pipeline to start from Gedaim on the border between Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and extend some 1,800 km to reach Khorgos in China's northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

About 1,300 km of the line, which will be connected with China's planned second West-to-East natural gas pipeline, will run through Kazakhstan and another 500 km or so will run through Uzbekistan

CNPC has already agreed to import some 30 billion cu m/year of natural gas through the planned pipeline from Turkmenistan over a 30-year period.

In February, CNPC launched construction of the second West-to-East natural gas pipeline, which is designed to transport the 30 billion cu m/year of Turkmen gas by yearend 2011.

Altogether, the second West-to-East gas pipeline will extend about 9,000 km total from Turkmenistan to China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and on to the Pearl River Delta via central China.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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