Address to shareholders
First Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, Chairman of the Gazprom Board of Directors Viktor Zubkov
Deputy Chairman of Gazprom's Board of Directors, Chairman of Gazprom's Management Committee Alexey Miller
2009 was by no means an easy year for the world economy. However, even in this difficult environment Gazprom continued its steady development in all areas of its operations – exploration, production, gas transportation, diversification of types of products, transportation routes and supply regions. Our strategic projects are successfully growing North, South, West and East, crossing borders and continents, enhancing Gazprom’s position as a global energy company.
In the North, the Yamal megaproject is in the active phase of implementation. Last year, Gazprom put into operation a unique Obsk – Bovanenkovo railroad bridge overpass across the Yuribey river. This overpass is the longest bridge in the Polar Circle. Trains are already rolling along this railroad. The first line of the underwater pipeline across the Baydaratskaya Bay has already been completed. This area is the most difficult segment of the Bovanenkovo – Ukhta trunk gas pipeline system. Work is underway to work around the Bovanenkovo field.
In the South, Gazprom has begun the construction of the underwater gas pipeline Dzhubga – Lazarevskoye – Sochi and the Adler Thermal Power Plant. These facilities represent a major contribution by the Company toward ensuring a steady power supply for the 2014 XXII th. Winter Olympic Games. Of no less significance was putting on stream of the Dzuarikau – Tskhinval gas pipeline. Located higher in the mountains than any other high-altitude pipeline it is a vital energy artery that links together South Ossetia and Russia.
In the East, 2009 saw by the first weld mark in Sakhalin – Khabarosk – Vladivostok pipeline that represented the launch of the construction of a gas transportation system in this region. In the framework of the Sakhalin 2 project for the first time in Russia’s history liquefied natural gas began to be exported to new sales markets for the Company, namely the countries in the Asian and Pacific Region. Work is fully underway to implement the large-scale East Gasification Program for which Gazprom has been appointed Coordinator by the Government of the Russian Federation.
In the West, Gazprom is fully on track to achieve its objective of ensuring fail-proof and uninterrupted gas supplies to the European markets. Last year, all the required permissions were obtained to begin the construction of the Nord Stream gas pipeline. At present, work is underway to lay down the pipeline on the Baltic Sea bed. Considerable progress has been achieved in the implementation of the South Stream project. All the required intergovernmental agreements for this project have been signed with the foreign partners. Furthermore, agreements have been reached to double the throughput capacity of the maritime segment of the South Stream pipeline – from 31 up to 63 bcm.
While strengthening its positions in the global energy markets Gazprom is also actively pursuing the implementation of the projects that are of special social significance for Russia with a special focus on carrying out the Gasification Program for Russia’s regions. At the end of 2009, the level of gasification of our country reached 63.2 %. The Company will continue to be actively engaged in pursuing this effort.
It is also important to mention that last year Gazprom was successfully developing new area of its operations. Gazprom Neft once again demonstrated some of the best efficiency results in Russia’s oil industry. In the power generation field Gazprom has firmly established itself as the industry’s leading investor.
Gazprom is consistently developing its resource base, pursuing a flexible policy in the production and sales area, is on target to implement its projects to meet anticipated demand for the energy resources and is thereby laying the groundwork for the Company’s new spurt of growth after the global financial and economic crisis is over, generating a sense of stability and confidence in tomorrow for the Company’s Shareholders.