A Russian delegation has left for Seoul for a meeting of the intergovernmental commission on gas supplies to South Korea and construction of a pipeline via North Korea, a source in the Russian Energy Ministry said on Monday.
"A meeting of the intergovernmental commission will be held tomorrow. A large Gazprom delegation has set off there and I hope they will reach an agreement," the source said.
The source said that three-party negotiations would start only after all necessary agreements with South Korea were concluded. "We are looking forward to holding tripartite talks," the source said.
In August, President Dmitry Medvedev said after talks with his North Korean counterpart Kim Jong-il that the parties had reached an agreement to draw up a project to build a gas pipeline to South Korea. The pipeline will cost an estimated $6 billion.
Alexander Medvedev, Gazprom deputy board chairman, said the expected volume of Russian gas exports to South Korea was raised to 12 billion cubic meters from 10 bcm.
Supplies of Russian gas to South Korea are expected to be started n 2017. Gazprom currently supplies up to 1.5 million tons of liquefied natural gas to South Korea annually.