The leaders of The Linde Group and Gazprom met in St. Petersburg, Russia, yesterday, in order to review the progress of the Amur Gas Processing Plant (GPP) construction project.

Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, and Wolfgang Büchele, CEO of Linde, met on July 5th 2016, and according to a press release, “Paid particular attention to potential partnership for the localisation of gas processing and liquefaction equipment within Russia.”

But it is understood that the meeting was also devised to cement the scope of future cooperation and potential business prospects between the two corporations.

In the Amur GPP development, the Tier One corporation is the supplier of all core process equipment used in the site’s cryogenic recovery of helium (He). The agreement will also see Linde develop the engineering documentation for cryogenic gas separation facilities.

Expected to excel

When completed, Amur GPP will be one of the largest plants in the world, producing up to 49 billion m3 of natural gas per year.

The plant forms part of Gazprom’s supply of Russian gas to China via the ‘Power of Siberia’ pipeline from eastern Siberian gas fields, and will be built in five phases ending in 2024.

The rise of global helium production from Russia is expected to excel from 2020, with substantial reserves of raw materials containing He situated in Eastern Siberia. In order to rival the US, which approximately controls over 50% of the world helium market, the development of the Russian He industry relies largely on both economic factors and the development of He extraction, production and distribution.