Publication: Monitor Volume: 1 Issue: 146

The China Petroleum Engineering and Construction Company, a division of the government-owned China National Petroleum Co., is reported to have agreed to provide $1.5 billion in financing and to participate in the construction of an oil pipeline from Baku via Georgia to Yumurtalik near the Turkish port of Ceyhan on the Mediterranean Sea. The New York-based Oil Capital company told the Lloyd’s List newspaper that it has organized an international consortium to build the 1,300 kilometers-long pipeline until the year 2000, at a projected cost of $2 billion. The consortium is discussing with Chevron Oil company, which is active in Kazakhstan, the possibility of shipping oil from that country across the Caspian Sea to Baku for pumping through the pipeline to Turkey. (16)

International oil companies active in Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan have yet to choose between a Russian and a Turkish route for transporting the oil due on stream by the year 2000. Whether Chinese involvement can help frustrate Russia’s goal to route that oil through its territory is far from clear. China’s technological and financial capabilities to cope with such a project are untested, and Beijing’s economic and political reasons for considering such involvement also await clarification.

Inter-Tajik Talks Stop Before Really Starting.