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China-Myanmar oil pipelines almost ready
January 21, 2013, 1:27 pm


Pipes for the China-Myanmar oil pipeline. [AP]

China has announced that the new oil and natural gas pipelines into Myanmar are expected to be operational around the end of May.

The country has dubbed the pipelines the nation’s new “strategic energy channels”, and increased the speed of construction on building both the domestic and foreign sections.

Barring insurmountable barriers, the oil and gas pipelines could begin operating in early June, Gao Jianguo, the head of the project under the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), told Xinhua on Saturday.

Most major work in Myanmar has been completed, while those in Chinese territory will be completed this month.

The pipelines will undergo pressure tests and a drying process in February, according to Gao.

Crude oil will be shipped from the Middle East via the Indian Ocean – instead of the risk-prone Strait of Malacca – before reaching Myanmar and entering China via the oil pipeline.

The 1,100-kilometer-long oil and natural gas pipelines run from the port of Kyaukpyu on Myanmar’s west coast and enter China at Ruili, Yunnan Province.

The oil pipeline has a designed annual transport capacity of 22 million tonnes, while the natural gas pipeline has a designed annual transport capacity of 12 billion cubic meters.

The channels will significantly increase the energy supply to the country’s underdeveloped south-western regions.

Inputs from Agencies

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