BlackJack: Putin closes Mega Natural Gas deal with Chinese

International By: Tad Lumpkin 5:11 pm

(Reuters) – China and Russia signed a $400-billion gas supply deal on Wednesday, securing the world’s top energy user a major source of cleaner fuel and opening up a new market for Moscow as it risks losing European customers over the Ukraine crisis.

The long-awaited agreement is a political triumph for Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is courting partners in Asia as those in Europe and the United States seek to isolate him over Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula.

Commercially, much depends on the price and other terms of the contract, which has been more than a decade in the making.

China had the upper hand as talks entered the home stretch, aware of Putin’s face-off with the West.

But both sides could take positives from a deal that will directly link Russia’s huge gas fields to Asia’s booming market for the first time – via thousands of miles of new pipeline across Siberia that form part of the package.

 

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SOURCE: BlackJack: Putin closes Mega Natural Gas deal with Chinesehttp://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/21/us-china-russia-gas-idUSBREA4K07K20140521

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