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Gazprom aiming to be world's energy leader

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Gazprom aiming to be world's energy leader

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Gazprom’s chief executive Alexei Miller has told the Russian state-owned energy giant’s shareholders that its strong ties to Russia’s government give it huge growth potential as it aims to become the world’s energy leader

Miller forecast a 62% rise in export revenues this year as a consequence of record-high energy prices, gas prices are tied to the cost of crude. He said: “In the last six years, Russia has had the biggest increase of gas extraction in the world. Over the past several years Gazprom’s annual gas production has grown in volume by four times more than the amount of gas that we supply to France.

Gazprom’s output is growing steadily, from 552 billion cubic metres in 2005 to a predicted 563 billion cubic metres this year. Miller said production will increase by two point six per cent in 2008.

Underlining the strong ties to the Kremlin that Miller spoke of, Gazprom elected Russia’s First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov as its new Chairman. Zubkov is a close ally of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. He replaces Dmitry Medvedev who stepped down to become Russia’s president taking over from Putin.