MOSCOW (Dow Jones)
Russian gas monopoly OAO Gazprom (GSPBEX.RS) has raised its estimate of the cost of the Nord Stream gas pipeline to Germany to EUR6 billion, the company said in a regulatory statement Wednesday.
The announcement is only the latest upward revision for a project that was initially costed by Gazprom at $4 billion.
Gazprom is owner of 50% plus one share in the Nord Stream project company. The rest is held equally by Germany's E.On AG (EON) and BASF AG (BF), although Nederlandse Gasunie NV is in talks to take a 10% stake, allowing the German partners to reduce their stakes by 5% each.
A spokeswoman for Nord Stream said that its official estimate of the cost of the first two strands, that would carry a projected 55 billion cubic meters a year to Germany, remains "over EUR5 billion."
However, she said that this is a preliminary estimate and that it will only be able to provide a more precise one when it has carried out its first tenders for equipment and pipe procurement later in the year.
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