MOSCOW. July 30. (Interfax) -Gazprom (RTS: GAZP) is thinking not just about large-scale pipeline gas supplies to China, but also about selling light-duty liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the Kovykta gas condensate field to that country, the Russian gas major said in its materials.
Gazprom has selected Saratov institute OJSC VNIPIgazdobycha (RTS: VNIP) to develop a justification of investment for a comprehensive gas supply project in the southern areas of the Irkutsk region, including the creation of gas processing and gas chemicals facilities.
The institute will have to determine prospective gas demand in the Irkutsk region, Buryatia and the Transbaikal territory, broken down into pipeline LNG and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), taking into account interfuel competition with alternative energy resources, costs to reequip facilities for gas consumption, the qualitative characteristics of various energy sources, and the environmental advantages.
Among other things, the contractor is expected to calculate the economic efficiency of gas processing facilities for several ownership variants - both facilities belonging to Gazprom, 50% of the gas chemicals plant belonging to a third-party investor, and the full construction of a gas chemicals plant by a third-party investor. Commercial LPG production has to be provided for in the gas processing plant.
Light-duty LNG plants might be located at the site of the Kovykta and Chikanskoye gas condensate fields, OJSC Sayanskkhimplast and in the Irkutsk-Angarsk area for sales to domestic and foreign markets - China and Mongolia, Gazprom's materials noted. Current production facilities in Sayansk will be taken into account as part of technological solutions, capacities and configurations of gas processing and gas chemicals plants.
The previous owner of the giant Kovykta gas condensate field was TNK-BP (RTS: TNBP), which was planning to export gas from that field to China and South Korea. The law on the monopolization of gas exports from Russia buried these plans. However, Viktor Vekselberg, co-owner and former overseer of TNK-BP's gas business, might still be involved in organizing exports of Kovykta gas to China, through Sayanskkhimplast, which he owns.
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(Originally published July 30, 2012, in Russia & CIS Business and Financial Newswire.)