China could become one of the major shareholders in Transneft, the state-backed oil pipeline company in Russia, one of its directors said on January 12, 2018.
Transneft 1st Vice President Maxim Grishanin said the Russian Direct Investment Fund was in talks to attract investors to the pipeline company.
«There are investors from Japan, we are waiting for Singapore and China,» he was quoted by Tass. «RDIF is holding talks with the Chinese.»
Russia has focused investment efforts toward the Asia-Pacific, which offers a buffer against a EU frustrated with the former Soviet Union's influence in the regional energy sector.
The 2010 launch of the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean oil pipeline in 2010 was described by Vladimir Putin as a strategic victory for a Russian energy sector looking to capitalize on Asian economy success.
Transneft said 3 years ago it would increase the yearly capacity through ESPO by 80 % by 2018.
China is the 2nd-largest economy in the world behind the United States. Oil demand from China in November, the last full month for which data are available, was 9 million barrels per day - the 2nd highest on record.