Russia's largest gas company, Gazprom, plans to ensure the output of gas at the level of 530 billion cu m of gas a year, vice-chairman of the Gazprom Board Vitaly Savelyev told journalists on Wednesday. Gas output will be increased through putting in operation of the Zapolyarnoye gas- and oil-condensate deposit (the north of Western Siberia). Alexander Ananenkov, director general of the Yamburggazodobycha gas-extracting company, told newsmen that the putting in operation of the first complex at the Zapolyarnoye deposit will make it possible to bring gas output to 35 billion cu m a year. After the second and third complexes are put in operation by the year of 2004, up to 100 billion cu m of gas a year may be extracted at the Zapolyarnoye deposit with due account for the development of the construction of gas mains. According to Ananenkov, before the end of this year the output of 6-7 billion cu m of gas will be ensured at the deposit. As much as 2 billion cu m of gas has already been extracted at it to date. The design capacity of the deposit with stable extraction of gas is planned for 42 years, and the maximal output of gas will be ensured at the deposit within 12 years.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea