ASTANA, Kazakhstan, Sept. 5 (UPI) -- Energy officials in Kazakhstan said Friday they expect to transport as much as 392 million barrels of oil per year through the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline.
Kazakh Energy and Minerals Minister Sauat Mynbayev said Friday that as much as 163 million barrels of oil per year could pass through the 500-mile Kazakhstan Caspian Transportation System, which crosses the Caspian seabed to Baku, Azerbaijan's capital.
From there, Kazakhstan expects to boost oil transportation to 392 million barrels through BTC by 2012, the Trend Capital news agency reported.
The $4 billion KCTS pipeline is expected to become operational by 2011.
Mynbayev said several pipeline arteries would bring more Kazakh oil to the international market.
"At present, the second stage of the Kazakhstan-China oil pipeline and branches of the Kenkiyak-Kumkol (third stage) are being constructed as well, and then we will get the opportunity to transport oil from the west of Kazakhstan to China," he said.
Kazakhstan says it will increase its oil production to 560 million barrels of oil and 1.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas annually by 2010.