A working meeting among Viktor Zubkov, Chairman of the Gazprom Board of Directors, Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee and Donald James Umpleby III, President of Caterpillar Group took place today as part of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum 2013.
The parties stressed that the Russian NGV market had a high potential for growth and opened vast possibilities for cooperation between the companies.
The talks resulted in the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding concerning potential cooperation in using gas as a vehicle fuel.
The document provides for exploring the possibilities for interaction aimed at introducing various equipment using natural gas as a vehicle fuel in Russia. It is planned that mining and petroleum industries, railroad transport, power generation and shipbuilding will be the major areas of joint activities aimed at the expansion of gas-powered equipment utilization.
The US Caterpillar is the world's leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and gas engines and industrial gas turbines. The company's goods are supplied to 200 countries.
Gazprom makes sustained efforts to develop the Russian NGV market as well as expand its presence in the respective international markets.
A section stipulating the parties' obligations in respect of the regional NGV markets development is included into Cooperation Agreements – basic documents conditioning Gazprom's interaction with Russian regions. Starting from 2013, the Russian Regions Gasification Program contains a mandatory section stipulating the construction of CNG filling stations and the conversion of motor vehicles to gas.
The Company plans to gradually increase the share of its own vehicles (motor, specialty, road-building and weight-lifting equipment) running on natural gas. A program for the expanded conversion of Gazprom Group's vehicles to natural gas between 2014 and 2017 will be devised this year.
Gazprom takes part in updating the national regulatory framework governing gas production and use as a motor fuel.
In order to improve the efficiency of Gazprom's strategy for the NVG market development, a special-purpose company, Gazprom Gazomotornoye Toplivo, was set up. It will consolidate Gazprom's relevant core assets.
In addition, Gazprom considers the NGV market as a promising area of the Company's activities targeted at increasing the economic efficiency of Russian gas sales abroad.
In April 2013, as part of fulfilling this task, Gazprom Group and Volkswagen Motorsport signed an Agreement for exclusive supplies of Russian NGV fuel to Volkswagen Motorsport team participating in a racing series for gas-powered cars of the same model.