Belarus should get prepared for an increase in the price of natural gas that it pays to Russia, First Deputy Prime Minister Uladzimir Syamashka said Wednesday, speaking at the 2012 Belarusian Industrial Forum.
Gazprom’s production costs are to soar, as the natural gas monopoly, whose current reserves are running dry, will soon have to tap new fields, including on the Yamal Peninsula and in the Artic Ocean, said Mr. Syamashka.
In particular, the costs are estimated to increase from the current $12 to $15 for 1000 cubic meters of gas to between $80 and $100 at new fields on the Yamal Peninsula, according to him.
The development of new fields on the peninsula will require Gazprom to spend $25 billion to $30 billion annually for a period of five or six years, while Gazprom can invest only up to $10 billion a year, which means that it will have to raise prices for its domestic and foreign customers, said the vice premier.
“We should use the ‘gas pause’ to increase the energy efficiency of the economy,” Mr. Syamashka stressed. //BelaPAN