Turkmenistan Seeks $4.1B Loan from China for South Yolotan Field -AP

(Dow Jones Newswires), Aug. 13, 2010

Energy-rich Turkmenistan is reaching out to China's State Development Bank for a $4.1 billion loan to develop South Yolotan, one of the world's biggest natural gas fields, the Associated Press cites state media as reporting Friday.

China lent Turkmenistan $3 billion in 2009 to develop the field near the border with Afghanistan. A 1,080-mile pipeline leading from Turkmenistan, through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, to China began pumping natural gas in December.

The Central Asian country also expressed readiness to award concessions for oil and gas fields in the Caspian Sea to U.S. companies. At a meeting Thursday, President Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov was quoted as instructing government officials to consider proposals for developing offshore oil and gas fields in the Caspian Sea submitted by Chevron and ConocoPhillips. Among the other potential candidates he named were TX Oil, an obscure Texas-based company whose chairman is Neil Mallon Bush, former president George W. Bush's younger brother, and Abu Dhabi-based Mubadala Oil and Gas.

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