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New Azeri pipeline ready to supply Europe with natural gas

Azerbaijan’s state energy firm SOCAR has completed the construction of the so-called Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP), the main part of the Southern Gas Corridor, which will transfer gas from Azerbaijan to Europe from 2020, the Azeri press has reported.

“We launched natural gas deliveries via TANAP to Turkey last year. Today, TANAP is ready to supply natural gas to Europe and we are expecting work on TAP [Trans-Adriatic Pipeline] to be completed,” SOCAR president Rovnag Abdullayev said on July 1.

Despite preliminary estimates saying that the project will cost around 11 billion US dollars, SOCAR officials said that the final cost of the pipeline remains below seven billion US dollars.

The initial transfer capacity of the newly completed pipeline is 16 billion cubic metres of gas per year, of which 10 billion cubic metres will be supplied to Europe.

The Trans-Anatolian Pipeline is the central element of the so-called Southern Gas Corridor, an initiative of the European Commission from 2008, aimed at reducing energy dependence on Russia and diversifying natural gas imports by establishing a gas route from the Caspian gas fields to Europe.

The corridor consists of three main elements: the South Caucasus Pipeline (SCP) running form Azerbaijan’s giant Shah Deniz gas field through Georgia to Turkey, TANAP running through Turkey to Greece and Bulgaria, and the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline. The latter, connecting the Turkish pipeline with Italy through Greece is expected to be finished this year, while the first gas deliveries are planned to be launched in early 2020.

As well as SOCAR, both Turkish state energy company BOTAŞ and British oil and gas giant BP have stakes in the project (38 per cent and 12 per cent respectively).