PARIS, Oct. 3 (UPI) -- The board of directors managing the planned South Stream gas pipeline for Europe is committed to starting the project in 2015, Gazprom said from France.
Gazprom Chairman Alexei Miller met in Paris with members of the board of directors for the South Stream natural gas pipeline.
South Stream is meant to add diversity to Russia's export routes through Europe. Geopolitical rows between Gazprom and its counterparts in Ukraine, which hosts most of Russia's gas for Europe, adds a layer of risk to conventional routes.
"During the meeting the board of directors approved a detailed construction schedule, endorsed the company's long-term budget and confirmed the commissioning of South Stream's first offshore line before the end of 2015," Gazprom said in a statement Wednesday.
South Stream is designed for an annual capacity of 2.2 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. Gazprom said it started construction of parts of the pipeline in December 2012.
Gazprom offered no indication of the budget set aside to build the pipeline. In 2008, online energy reporting website Upstream Online put the price tag at $20 billion.