Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee held another meeting on innovations in the Russian pipe industry at the Volga Pipe Plant headquarters (city of Volzhsky, Volgograd Region).
Prior to the meeting, Gazprom's delegation got acquainted with pipe products of the Volga Pipe Plant (Pipe Metallurgical Company TMK) and visited a new concrete coating site of Pipeline Coatings and Technologies.
Taking part in the meeting were Vitaly Markelov, Deputy Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, Oleg Aksyutin, Dmitry Lyugai, Sergey Prozorov and Vsevolod Cherepanov, Management Committee Members, as well as heads and representatives from Gazprom's specialized structural units and a number of subsidiaries, the Pipe Producers Association, United Metallurgical Company OMK, Pipe Metallurgical Company TMK, Chelyabinsk Pipe Rolling Plant, Severstal and other companies.
It was stressed that the long-standing cooperation with Gazprom allowed domestic companies considerably upgrading the pipe manufacturing segment, mastering new types of pipes, including those unparalleled globally. The work done resulted in, among other things, steady reduction in the number of imported pipes within Gazprom's procurement structure – it only accounted for 0.5 per cent in 2014.
Gazprom is committed to bringing innovations into widespread use. This line of development is reflected in updated programs for sci-tech cooperation between Gazprom and leading pipe companies. Over 60 innovative R&D and technology activities will be performed within these programs until 2021, with a focus on developing import substituting products.
By that time it is planned to set up the production of large-diameter pipes from X100-X120 steels for extra-high pressure gas pipelines, new generation threaded pipes designed for extremely harsh oil & gas field development conditions as well as pipes for offshore production. In addition, the pipe companies will launch the production of various shut-off valves and well equipment for import substitution.
The meeting participants also addressed the issue of applying formula-based pricing for pipe products. A three-year experience of using this mechanism has proven its efficiency – market players obtained a high predictability of estimations. In addition, the work on improving the formulas and adapting them to the current market conditions should continue.
At the end of the meeting, tasks were given with the aim of advancing the fruitful cooperation with the Russian pipe manufacturing industry in order to supply Gazprom's promising projects with new types of pipe products.
In addition, today a cooperation agreement was signed between the Technical Committee for Standardization TC 23 “Oil and gas Industry” and TC 357 “Steel and Cast Iron Pipes and Cylinders”. The agreement provides for further interaction (has been on since 2008) with a view to improve the quality of national and interstate standards under development. The document was inked by the Committees' Heads – Vitaly Markelov and Sergey Chikalov, Deputy Director General for Industrial Marketing and Innovations of Pipe Metallurgical Company TMK.
As Alexey Miller pointed out at the end of the meeting, “the results obtained during ten years of the joint work between Gazprom and metallurgists are mutually advantageous; it allowed bringing Russian pipe manufacturing companies to the cutting edge, while Gazprom could implement ultramodern projects such as, for example, the Bovanenkovo – Ukhta gas pipeline surpassing its global counterparts.”