By Sara Rajabova
The construction of the Uzbek section of the fourth line of the Central Asia-China gas pipeline, which is deemed to help diversify Central Asia’s energy exports, is expected to launch in mid-2015.
A source close to the project told Trend that at present, a basic technical project with an estimated cost of $800 million has been developed. The length of the line, which will connect the existing gas pipeline infrastructure in Uzbekistan with the site in Tajikistan which is already under construction, will be about 200 kilometers.
The Central Asia–China gas pipeline is a natural gas pipeline system from Central Asia to Xinjiang in China. The pipeline starts at the Turkmen-Uzbek border city of Gedaim and runs through central Uzbekistan and southern Kazakhstan before reaching Horgos in China's Xinjiang.
Currently, the construction of three lines of the gas pipeline each running for 1,830 kilometers has been completed. It is expected that the third branch will be filled with gas in Q1 of 2015.
The construction of the Central Asia-China gas pipeline started in 2008. Its total length nears 7,000 kilometers, while the pipe’s diameter equals 1,067 millimeters.
In general, the fourth line of the Central Asia-China gas pipeline with a total length of about 1,000 kilometers will pass through five countries - Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and China and will increase its aggregate throughput capacity to 85 billion cubic meters.
In 2013, Uzbekistan and China signed an agreement on the construction and operation of the pipeline Uzbekistan-China with the capacity of 30 billion cubic meters of gas per year, which will pass along the Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Tajikistan-Kyrgyzstan-China route.
In 2014, Uzbekneftegaz National Holding Company and the China National Petroleum Corporation signed an agreement to create a joint venture for the construction and operation of the pipeline to be held along the Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Tajikistan-Kyrgyzstan-China route. The need to create a second joint venture is related to the financing of projects.
Asia Trans Gas JV, created by Uzbekneftegaz and CNPC for the construction and operation of the "Central Asia-China" pipeline passing along the Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan-China route currently operate in Uzbekistan.
Central Asia–China gas pipeline is the first pipeline to bring Central Asian natural gas to China and highlights China's quest for Central Asian energy exports.
Aside from fostering economic co-operation between China and central Asian countries, the pipeline is also expected to be a source of prosperity for the region, promoting development and investment in local natural gas resources, stimulating the growth of local equipment manufacturing and construction industries, as well as create employment opportunities.