Turkmenistan’s economic partnership with China continues to grow as China steps up its lending to Turkmenistan and consumption of Turkmen gas. In June, Turkmenistan’s Turkmengaz and China’s National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) signed a deal agreeing to increase Turkmenistan’s natural gas shipments to China to 65 billion cubic meters per year (bcm/y), a leap from the 30 bcm/y originally envisioned in 2007 at the launch of the Turkmenistan-China pipeline. The pipeline, which went online in 2009, and was built and operated by CNPC, starts in Turkmenistan’s Lebap province carrying natural gas from the Bagtyyarlyk fields on the right bank of Amu Darya through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan into Xinjiang in western China. The pipeline, China's first energy corridor designed to import foreign natural gas, has made Turkmenistan into one of China's major gas suppliers in Central Asia.
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