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“Taking into account ongoing transformations in the Chinese economy, gas is becoming a key energy source for the country,” the newspaper cites Zhang Yousheng, director-general at state Energy Research Institute, as saying. Regrettably, China’s gas reserves are not big, he said, adding that along with increased gas exports, the country should develop shale gas and methane production from coal beds.
In 2013, gas consumption in China went up by 13.9% to reach 167.5 billion cubic meters.
Russia’s gas producer Gazprom and China's CNPC agreed in May that Russia will supply China with 38 billion cubic meters of gas starting from 2018-2019.
Natural gas will be supplied to China via the east-bound Power of Siberia pipeline, the construction of which was launched by President Vladimir Putin on September 1.
Gas traffic to China via the western export route may reach 30 billion cubic meters a year. The route will carry gas from fields in western Siberia.
In 2015 the countries will sign at least three key documents on a project for Russian natural gas supplies to China via the western route.