Monday, 09 December 2019

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Conflict in Shan State could disrupt gas flow

The continued conflict in northern Shan State will likely delay the first shipments of natural gas from the Bay of Bengal through the Shwe Gas pipeline to China, according to a report in industry website Upstream quoting a Myanmar official.

Photo: Shan State Army (SSA)
Photo: Shan State Army (SSA)
Although construction of the almost 500-mile trans-Myanmar pipeline is on track to be completed by the end of May, renewed clashes between Myanmar government forces and the Kachin Independence Army and the Shan State Army South threaten to derail the transfer of firstly natural gas from Kyaukphyu in Rakhine State through northern Shan State to Kunming, followed by the piping of oil on the same route scheduled for later this year.

A senior Energy Ministry official is quoted by Reuters as saying that despite the completion of the pipeline, Naypyitaw was still unsure when the situation along the route will allow it to operate.

The statement, which was made by an anonymous official, contrasts with comments made by the vice-governor of Yunnan Province last week when he said that the natural gas pipeline would begin pumping natural gas in the first half of this year.

For more background:
  1. Chinese predict June opening for Burma pipeline
  2. No hasty ceasefire, says KIO