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Uzbekistan signs gas deal with Russia to ensure winter supply

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Uzbekistan has signed a two-year contract with Russia’s Gazprom to buy 2.8 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually, starting from October 1, 2023. The deal was announced by the Uzbek energy ministry and aimed at securing the country’s gas supply during the cold season.

The gas will be delivered through the Central Asia-Center pipeline, which connects Central Asia to Russia via Kazakhstan. The pipeline was originally built to export gas from the region to Russia but has been reversed in recent years to allow imports as well.

The gas price was not disclosed, but Uzbek Energy Ministry spokesman Sherzod Asadov said it was based on a commercial basis and reflected the market situation. He added that the deal was mutually beneficial and would enhance the energy security and cooperation in the region.

Uzbekistan is one of the largest gas producers in Central Asia, but it also faces domestic shortages due to high demand and aging infrastructure. The country has been diversifying its gas export markets, including China and Pakistan, but it also relies on imports from neighboring countries such as Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan.

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