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Petronas set to expand role in Turkmenistan

By Thursday December 8th, 2011 No Comments

PUTRAJAYA: The extensive involvement by Petronas in the oil and gas sector in Turkmenistan is set to soar as the company could soon venture in downstream petrochemical operations in that country.

This follows positive remarks by Turkmenistan president Gurbanguly Berdimuhmedov on Petronas’ performance in his country.

The national petroleum company is also in the running to construct new gas platforms in the Caspian Sea.

These matters were discussed during the bilateral meeting between Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Berdimuhamedov at Perdana Putra here yesterday.

Speaking at a joint-press conference later, Najib said it was a clear manifestation of the technological capabilities that Petronas had developed over the years.

He said Petronas, which had so far invested US$5.6bil (RM17.5bil) in Turkmenistan hoped to double its current gas production from 500 million square feet to one billion square feet within three to five years.

“Petronas is also in a position to produce oil from the same field,” said Najib, adding that based on the president’s offer, Petronas stood ready to be involved in downstream petrochemical operation in Turkmenistan.

He said he had also extended Petronas’ offer to help develop an oil and gas institute in Turkmenistan and to train its people to be involved in the running of the institute.

“The number of Turkmen being trained at the Universiti Teknologi Petronas would also be increased,” he said adding that the university so far had trained 110 Turkmen.

Najib said he and Berdimuhamedov agreed to hold a joint-cultural day in Ashgabat, the Turkmenistan capital, and Kuala Lumpur in the near future.

He also announced Malaysia would set up a resident diplomatic mission in Ashgabat later this month.

Meanwhile, Berdimuhamedov said Petronas, the first foreign company to participate in his country’s oil and gas sector, had been outstanding in its performance.

“We are looking forward to more investments including producing oil in Turkmenistan.

“The Government of Turkmenistan is fully supportive of Petronas investment,” he said.

Source : The Star

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