Transneft says CPC ready for Kashagan only in March-April
MOSCOW, Sept 20
MOSCOW, Sept 20 (Reuters) - The Caspian pipeline (CPC) will be ready to get commercial oil flows from the newly launched Kazakh Kashagan oilfield only in the spring, a senior official at Russia's oil pipeline monopoly said on Friday, suggesting an alternative route for the oil.
"We are counting on receiving Kashagan's oil in commercial volumes through the CPC likely in March-April," Mikhail Barkov, Transneft's vice president, told Reuters, adding that meanwhile Transneft's Samara pipeline could serve as an alternative.
He has said that the expansion programme of the CPC, where Transneft is a shareholder, is behind schedule by up to a year.
Kazakhstan expects Kashagan, the world's biggest oil find in decades, to achieve commercial production in October and produce around 8 million tonnes of crude in 2014.
A CPC spokesman in Moscow said the shipments from Kashagan would begin in late October.
Central Asia's largest economy and the second-largest ex-Soviet oil producer after Russia, Kazakhstan has forecast Kashagan will produce 1 million barrels per day from 2020 and eventually reach 1.5 million bpd.
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