Turkmenistan strikes natural gas deal with China’s CNPC

ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan (AP) — China’s state-owned CNPC has started work to set up new wells at Turkmenistan’s giant natural gas fields in exchange for future gas supplies, news reports said Tuesday.

It will take China National Petroleum Corporation 2 1/2 years to make three new wells at the Galkynysh field operational, Turkmen media reported. Each will have a daily output of three million cubic meters of gas.

Under the deal with CNPC, Turkmenistan will pay for its services by supplying 17 billion cubic meters (600 billion cubic feet) of gas a year for the period of three years to a total of 51 billion cubic meters (1.8 trillion cubic feet) of gas.

Turkmenistan’s President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov said the country annually supplies 40 billion cubic meters of gas to China.

Turkmenistan’s economy is overwhelmingly dependent on exports of its vast natural gas reserves.

China is the main export market for Turkmen gas, and the country ships smaller amounts to Russia. The Central Asian nation also has been working to build a pipeline that would pump gas to Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

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