26 Dec 2012

New oil pipeline from Siberia to Pacific

8:11 am on 26 December 2012

Russia has launched a new pipeline linking oilfields in Siberia with a port on the Pacific Ocean.

The BBC reports the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline will help Russia export more oil to Asian countries and reduce its dependence on the European market.

Transneft took six years to build the 4200km pipeline to the port of Kozmino, which formerly relied on a rail link. The cost was more than $US25 billion.

Japan bought about 30% of oil exports from Kozmino this year followed by China with 24% and the United States with 22%.

President Vladimir Putin formally opened the pipeline early on Tuesday.

"This gives us an opportunity to efficiently work on the fastest-growing market in the world, on the Asia Pacific market," he said last week.

Kozmino is near the border with China.

According to projections by VTB Capital, East Siberian fields will produce 45 million tonnes of oil (900,000 barrels per day) by 2020, up from 15 million tonnes this year.