3 nations to resume testing at gas field

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3 nations to resume testing at gas field

Korea, Russia, and China will resume an examination of the profitability of the co-development of a natural gas field near Irkutsk, Russia, the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Energy said yesterday. The three neighboring countries had initially planned to complete the study of the feasibility of the joint project by the end of June, but were forced to suspend the study due to the rapid spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome in Asia. Korea, Russia and China will hold a working level meeting on the project in Beijing in mid-July, and will make conclusions on the feasibility of the project around the end of August. “If the project is determined profitable and Korea joins in the development, this country could be able to buy 7 million metric tons of natural gas for 30 years starting in 2008 or 2010,” an official from the ministry said. The project aims to develop a gas deposit located 450 kilometers (281 miles) north of Irkutsk and pipe it through to Korea and China. About 840 million metric tons of natural gas is believed to be stored in the deposit, the ministry official said. The gas reserve lies about 4,115 kilometers from Korea. Korea, China, and Russia agreed in November 2000 to co-develop the gas field and signed an agreement on the feasibility studies shortly thereafter. by Kim Jong-yoon

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