Gazprom Pushes Talks on New China Link

Gazprom Pushes Talks on New China LinkGazprom Pushes Talks on New China Link

Gazprom PJSC, the world’s top natural gas exporter, will keep pushing for a new contract with China, as Russian President Vladimir Putin travels to Beijing this week, even while the Asian nation’s worst economic slowdown in a quarter century batters demand. “The talks are ongoing,” Gazprom chief executive officer, Alexey Miller, said in Beijing on Friday before the president’s visit, declining to give any outlook on the deal, Bloomberg reported.

"On Saturday, the state-controlled company plans to sign a cooperation memorandum on building underground storage sites and gas-fired power generators in China," he added.

That accord follows more than two years of talks.

Putin clinched Russia’s first contract to ship gas to China from untapped East Siberian fields under a $400 billion deal in 2014, as relations with the US and the European Union soured over the conflict in Ukraine. Gazprom planned to follow the  landmark deal with another 30-year agreement to supply West Siberian gas, which feeds Europe, its most lucrative market. The deals would make China its largest export client.

In September, as the western route stalled, Gazprom instead signed a memorandum of understanding with China about a possible smaller third gas pipeline from the Sakhalin region in Russia’s Far East. During this visit, Gazprom held “detailed talks” on the West Siberia contract, the company said on Friday after Miller met with China Natural Petroleum Corp., without providing details.