MOSCOW: Russia's Energy Minister toldKommersant daily on Tuesday that a new law to allow liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports should be implemented from January 1 2014, which will end the monopoly of state-run Gazprom .
Last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin offered to lower restrictions "gradually" on LNG exports, in a potential blow to Gazprom, which has a monopoly on exports of both pipeline gas and LNG under a 2006 law.
The amendments to the law are crucial for a planned Arctic LNG project jointly developed by Russia's top non-state gas producer Novatek, France's Total and China's CNPC.
"We are preparing the amendments. It is expected that they will be offered for the government's consideration in the next few weeks," Alexander Novak told the newspaper.