RIA Novosti reported that Russian natural gas monopoly Gazprom will increasingly cede the domestic market to independent producers by 2030 as part of ambitions to double exports to 320 billion cubic meters to 345 billion cubic meters. Gazprom said last Friday its natural gas sales should reach 710 billion cubic meters to 765 billion cubic meters by 2030, up some 30% against pre-crisis figures in 2007 to 2008 with no plans to increase domestic gas sales.
According to Gazprom calculations, independent gas producers should shoulder an increase in gas demand in Russia, which could push their share on the domestic market to 33% to 40% by 2030 from 27% in 2008. Though gas prices for domestic consumers have been rising fast, they were 80% lower than prices for gas exports to Europe in 2009. According to various estimates, Vedomosti reported Gazprom has already signed contracts for some 30 billion cubic meters of gas supplies to Europe, where gas demand should grow 19% to 713 billion cubic meters in 2030 against 2008.
Mr Mikhail Korchemkin director of East European Gas Analysis told the paper that the capacity of Gazprom operating pipelines to Europe, including its Ukrainian and Belarusian transit routes, stood at some 200 billion cubic meters annually. The Nord Stream gas pipeline Russia is building with Germany under the Baltic Sea should push total pipeline capacities to 225 billion cubic meters which would be more than enough to cover a predicted rise in gas exports to Europe.