Russia and China are launching a very important economic project

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For the first time, Russian exports of natural gas have a path to the east, not just the West.

The Siberian Energy pipeline has been opened.

Russian gas to China

Russia has set up a "Siberian energy" pipeline to transport natural gas from its fields on Russian territory in Siberia to China.

Under an agreement signed with China in 2014, Russia has pledged to build a pipeline of more than 2,000 km in five years to transport gas from its stomachs to China.

The agreement provides for the transfer of 5 billion cubic meters of natural gas from Russia to China in 2020. Then the "Siberian Energy" pipeline should transfer 38 billion cubic meters per year by 2025.

Extreme conditions.

Russia has set up the gas pipeline in defiance of harsh natural conditions. Construction workers had to make their way into the frozen lands amid swamps and mountains in the cold of winter when temperatures drop to minus 62 degrees Celsius.

Russia was keen to preserve the environment. To this end, construction workers were keen to avoid damaging the environment.

What is the price of gas?

Russia and China have not disclosed the cost of the Siberian Energy pipeline and the prices of the gas to be pumped through it, giving way to speculation.

Some estimates suggest that China will buy Russian gas at the same price as Russia sells gas to Europe, while other estimates suggest that Russia will sell gas to China at prices 30 percent more than Russian gas to Europe.

Strategic importance

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he sees the launch of the "Siberian Energy" pipeline as a historic event, while Chinese President Xi Jinping said the launch would open a new chapter in Sino-Russian relations.

Alexei Miller, president of Gazprom, which manages Russia's natural gas exports, said 10,000 people had taken part in the project to build a Siberian power line in Russian territory, while Chinese construction workers said they had made every effort to complete the project on time.

The gas will be pumped through the Siberian Energy line initially to northern China. Then Russian gas will arrive in central China.

The need is growing

Some experts estimate that China will need 610 billion cubic meters of natural gas in 2035. Gazprom has announced its willingness to double exports.

Russia could meet 20 percent of China's natural gas needs.

China will continue to import gas from Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan through the Central Asian pipeline.



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