Azerbaijan interested in trans-Caspian gas pipeline through its territory.

Aug 06, 1999 02:00 AM

Azerbaijan is interested in laying trans-Caspian gas pipeline through its territory and the territory of Georgia. This view was expressed by president of the Azerbaijani state oil company Natik Aliyev.
In his words, the capacity of this strategic pipeline, 3,000- km long, will be 30 bn of cm of natural gas annually, and this capacity will be increased gradually in compliance with the schedule of fuel deliveries to the Turkish market.
This schedule, Natik Aliyev believes, must also envisage a place for Azerbaijani gas, which will be a subject of the talks with all sides showing interest in the implementation of this project. The project's cost is reportedly from 2 to 4 billion dollars.
Azerbaijan, now acting in this project as a transit country, will have chances in the future to become a big gas exporter, Natik Aliyev thinks. This affirmation is based on the results of prospecting boring on the " Shakh Deniz" gas field in the Caspian shelf, the reserves of which are estimated from 700 bn cm to 1 tcm of natural gas.
According to the operator of this project -- BP-Amoco, the "Shakh Deniz deposit in the Caspian shelf is a large gas bearing deposit of world importance and its reserves can ensure export of 16-20 bn cmpy of natural gas to Turkey from Azerbaijan, not to the detriment of its economy.
Six foreign oil companies, participating in this four-billion dollar project, including the LUKoil Russian oil company, signed on June 4, 1996, have already spoken for backing export offers of Azerbaijani gas, and consider this problem actual.
Proceeding from this fact, the president of the state oil company of Azerbaijan believes, his country already now takes care of its own interests in the trans-Caspian gas project. However, at first it will participate in the project as a transit state. In this context the president of the state oil company of Azerbaijan believes that one of the main tasks of the company now is to balance relations between Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan in this large-scale project.

Source: Itar-Tass via Newspage
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