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    CANADIAN COMPANIES INTERESTED IN ENERGY PROJECTS IN SAKHALIN

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    YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK, March 15, 2004. (RIA Novosti) - Representatives of 21 Canadian companies are discussing in Sakhalin, the possibility of participating in Russian oil and gas projects.

    The Canadian economic mission, which arrived in Sakhalin yesterday, has begun familiarizing itself with the implementation of Russia's largest oil and gas investment projects on the continental shelf.

    Canadian Ambassador to Russia Christopher Westdal is leading the delegation.

    In a meeting with Sakhalin Governor Ivan Malakhov, Mr. Westdal expressed Canada's great interest in participating in tenders to build the requisite oil and gas infrastructure, including the construction of social projects.

    Mr. Malakhov said that for efficient participation, Canadian companies need to create joint ventures with Russian companies. He also said that Sakhalin had a positive experience with this practice during the implementation of the Sakhalin-1 and the Sakhalin-2 projects.

    He cited the work of an Australian firm that visited Sakhalin twice last year as an example. The Australian company and its Russian partners received subcontracts for oil and gas projects worth $20 million.

    The delegation of Canadian businessmen will take part in the two-day seminar, "Conducting Business in Sakhalin".

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