The pipeline, running from Skovorodino in east Siberia to Daqing in north China, is an offshoot of a new oil export route Russia is building to the Pacific Ocean, providing the world’s top oil producer with a strategic window on the energy-hungry markets of Asia. When it is completed in 2013, the 4,070km pipeline can carry up to 1.6m barrels a day of oil, about one third of Russia’s current exports.
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