- It will reach Skovorodino by summer of 2008 (Phase 1). That would allow China to build a branch to connect Skovorodino to Daqing (blue line).
- Russia also agrees (tentatively) to connect Skovorodino to Nakhodka afterward, that would satisfy Japan's need. But "No date has been set for the second stage, and Putin gave no timetable or other specifics."
China had negotiated and reached a deal with Yukos to build a pipe line from since 1992, from Angorsk via Chita to Daqing (yellow line). Unfortunately when Yukos was nationalized the deal was terminated. Japan has then seized the opportunity and tried to shut China out and the current pipeline was proposed (with a detour to north of Lake Baikal due to environmental concern - Baikal is the deepest lake (1637m or 5369 feet!) in the world and perhaps also the cleanest large lake remains on earth, the shaded areas are natural reserves oir national parks. It is also for environmental reason that the terminus was changed from Vladivostok/Perevoznaya Bay to Nakhodka).
Here is another myth that I scratch my head very hard:
- I can understand why Japan can be concerned about the pipeline passing through China, even though the route is shorter and the cost cheaper, because the Koizumi regime's general hostility and distrust on China. However, why does Japan try so hard to shut China out? The "reason" Japan provided is China will "siphon" away the oil at upper stream (they learned a lot from Saddam, it seems). But don't the Russian make the decision of which branch it open the taps to? Don't price and market determine who gets the goods? It should be noted that China does not try to shut Japan out, it just wanted a branch to deliver the hydrocarbon to Daqing.
Putin is not Chen Shui Bian or Annette Lu, he knows the more customers he has the better price he can command. He wants to be able to sell his oil to everybody, not just China, also to Korea and US via Nakhodka.
Had the Angarsk-Daqing line been completed, there would have been much less pressure on world oil demand because China could shift its sourcing to the extra capacity Russia has. Maybe we could all have been able to enjoy cheaper gas. Japan's bullying has hurt the world's oil importers including itself, as it has paid a lot more to import oil at a higher price today.
Update SEP/2006: Dili blog