Russia, China discuss natural gas ties UPI 1/23/2014 12:47:32 PM BEIJING, Jan. 23 (UPI) -- Russian energy company Gazprom said it discussed in Beijing its options for delivering more natural gas to the Chinese market with state-owned CNPC. Gazprom's top executive, Alexei Miller, traveled to Beijing to meet with Zhou Jiping, chairman of state-owned China National Petroleum Corp. "The meeting participants addressed the issues of Russian natural gas supply to the Chinese market via the eastern route," Gazprom said in a statement Wednesday. "Both parties are interested in successful completion of the negotiations and looking forward to signing a contract as soon as possible." Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev went to Beijing in October to discuss natural gas deals with Russian energy companies. Russian energy company Novatek said then it had reached a deal to supply no less than 3 million tons of liquefied natural gas to CNPC under the terms of a 15-year contract. Gazprom said deals discussed with CNPC last year envision the delivery of natural gas through a regional pipeline network to China. Chinese government data released this week show the country piped in 20 percent more natural gas in December than it did the same time last year.