MOSCOW (Dow Jones)

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has signed a ruling to submit an agreement on the construction of a natural gas pipeline along the Caspian Sea coast to the parliament for ratification, the government's press service said Monday, news agency Prime-Tass reported.

The governments of Russia, Kazakhstan, and Turkmenistan signed the agreement in December 2007.

The pipeline will run from Turkmenistan through Kazakhstan and link up with Russia's pipeline system. It will be built parallel to an existing gas pipeline and will transport up to 20 billion cubic meters of Central Asian gas annually once completed.

Russia's Energy Ministry expects construction of the pipeline to start sometime in July-December 2009, Deputy Energy Minister Anatoly Yanovsky said earlier this month.

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