The oil pipeline linking Alataw Pass to Dushanzi in northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has been completed and is ready for operation.

The oil pipeline linking Alataw Pass to Dushanzi in northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has been completed and is ready for operation, said sources with the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) Thursday.

China saw the completion of the Sino-Kazakh Oil Pipeline linking Atasu of Kazakhstan in the west to Alataw Pass in the east last week.

As the crude oil pipeline boasts the largest pipe caliber, the oil pipeline was built in two phases.

The first phase of the pipeline, with a total investment of 1.046 billion yuan (about 130 million US dollars), was put into production in the mid-December, with a designed annual oil transmission capacity of some 10 million tons. And the second phase is expected to be completed in 2010, creating an annual transmission capacity of 20 million tons and a maximum capacity of 50 million tons.

With the completion and operation of the pipeline, the CNPC plans to turn Dushanzi into the largest petrochemical base in West China, said a senior official with the company.

The current 6 million tons of oil refining capacity will be expanded to 10 million tons and 220,000 tons of ethylene production capacity are going to be expanded into one million tons, he said.

With a total input of 26 million yuan, the petrochemical project, the largest one of its kind, has seen the commencement of its construction in August and is expected to go into production in 2007.

Oil from Kazakhstan will be refined in the base and transmitted to the energy-thirsty east to feed the rapid economic growth of the country, said experts.

CNPC, China’s largest oil producer, now has three exploration projects, four oilfields and two pipeline projects in Kazakhstan. It has just closed the acquisition of PetroKazakhstan Inc. in October, laying a basis for the oil supply of the pipeline.

Source : english.people.com.cn