Kazakhstan seems to decide exploiting the most of the transit advantages of gas transmission through transnational pipelines. During a meeting in Moscow, Kazakh Energy Minister Nurlan Nogaev suggested Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak to consider the possibility of passing the “Power of Siberia-2” Gas Pipeline through the territory of the republic. Interfax reports about this with reference to the press service of the Kazakh Ministry.
The Ministry clarified that it is proposed to lay the “Power of Siberia-2” on the territory of Kazakhstan with further connection to the “West-East” gas pipeline system of the People’s Republic of China.
This is a very strong move on the part of Kazakhstan, given that the Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan-China Transnational Gas Pipeline has been already passing through the territory of the republic. The construction of the “Power of Siberia-2” will certainly strengthen the position of Kazakhstan as an important transit country that controls energy flows in Asia. It’s a great responsibility to be a transit country for two gas giants – Russia and Turkmenistan in providing gas to the giant market of China.
The passage of two transnational pipelines through the territory of Kazakhstan, in addition to transit payments, gives Nursultan Nazarbayev an opportunity for gas maneuver. There is not as much natural gas in Kazakhstan as there is an oil. Therefore, if it is necessary, the republic can buy gas, making a selection from two gas pipelines at the reasonable price. In case, own gas is in excess, it can reserve space for its gas in transit pipelines and sell it to China.
The “Power of Siberia” is a strategic main gas pipeline for supplying gas to Russian consumers in the Far East and China. It was launched on December 2, 2019. When the pipeline reaches its rated capacity, it will transport 38 billion cubic meters of gas annually.
The Turkmenistan-China Gas Pipeline was launched in 2009. Currently, the pipeline annually supplies about 50 billion cubic meters of natural gas to the Chinese market.