China signs deal to buy 40 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually from Turkmenistan
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  • China signed a 30-year deal on June 24 to increase purchases of natural gas – up to 40 billion cubic meters annually, from Turkmenistan. The deal is considered significant as Beijing competes with Moscow for access to Central Asia's energy wealth and marks another step in Chinese efforts to find long-term, stable energy supplies.

    Work on a 7,000-kilometer pipeline from Turkmenistan is expected to be finished by the end of the year. Reports indicated that China had promised to lend $3 billion to develop the vast South Yolotan natural gas field close to the Afghan border. An independent audit by a British company last year had indicated that the field may be one of the five largest in the world. Turkmenistan till now had exported nearly all of its gas to Russia1.