China intends to invest in massive projects in Crimea less than a month after the former Ukrainian province was annexed by the Russian Federation.
Vladimir Chizhov, Russia’s ambassador to the European Union, said Russia is partnering with China in two major Crimean projects: the “Power of Siberia” gas pipeline and a 25 meter deep Crimean deep water port. These projects will continue despite the ongoing crisis in the Ukraine, Chizhov said.
He noted that Gazprom, Russia’s national oil company, and China National Petroleum Corporation (China’s largest oil company) have a legally binding agreement from 2013. He said that exploitation of the Tchayandinskoe field will begin in 2019.
Chizhov said Russia and China are will continue with plans for Chinese firms to build a 25 meter deep port in Crimea as part of a new transport corridor from Asia to Europe called “The Economic Belt of the Great Silk Route.”
As part of this project, Chinese firms will dig an enormous trench near the Crimean town of Frunze and fill it with sea water by demolishing a dam. Chizhov said Russia’s annexation of Crimea, which has been roundly condemned, has done nothing to stop the Crimean port project that is worth $3 billion in the first stage alone.
The Voice of Russia, the Russian government’s international radio broadcasting service, said that China “takes interest in alternative energy projects in Crimea.” Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich concurred.
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