Lying in inland Asian continent, to seek for access to the sea and marine channels to international market becomes an important strategic task for the Kazakhstan government.
In April 1997, in order to safeguard Kazakhstan's national interest in the transportation of energy resources and import and export, to optimize management in trade, to attract foreign investment and to unify the charge standard along all the lines of energy resources transportation, Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev ordered to establish an internally share-holding company for the transportation of energy resources: Kazakhstan Oil and Gas Transportation Company. From January 2002, Kazakhstan National Oil and Gas Company became the only shareholder of the company. Presently, Kazakhstan Oil and Gas Transportation Company is taking active measures and also exploiting and constructing new lines for the output of energy resources.
Taking the geographical advantage into consideration, Kazakhstan Oil and Gas Company held that the prospect of cooperation with China in transporting energy resources sees a bright perspective. Kazakh Prime Minister Danial Akhmetov said at an economic forum in ��ktyubinsk, an oil-producing state in the west that Sino-Kazak oil pipeline bears a great strategic importance and Kazakhstan will take an active part in the construction of the project.
Sino-Kazak cooperation in transporting energy resources began in September 1997 when the two countries signed inter-governmental agreement on oil and natural gas cooperation. Meanwhile, the two sides also approved the general cooperation agreement signed by Kazakhstan Energy and Natural Resource Ministry and China National Petroleum Corporation. The two parties studied the draft design of oil exploitation and pipeline construction.
As Kazakhstan's oil production increased, the condition for constructing Sino-Kazakhstan pipeline became mature. In June 2003, during Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to Kazakhstan, Kazakhstan National Oil and Gas Company and China National Petroleum Corporation signed agreement on conducting investment studies on phase-by-phase construction of the oil pipelines. In July the same year, the two companies also signed Memorandum on feasibility studies. The second stage of Sino-Kazak oil pipeline, the around 1,000-kilometer-long Atasu-Alashankou pipeline, is expected to start construction by the end of this year.
Experts firmly believe, Sino-Kazak oil pipeline will have a bright future in terms of both economic benefit and geopolitical purpose.
By People's Daily Online