Turkey and Greece to cooperate on energy project

Mar 25, 2002 01:00 AM

Turkey and Greece will sign an agreement to carry Caspian gas to Greece through a pipeline crossing Turkey during the Greek development minister's visit to Ankara, diplomats said. The $ 300 mm project also foresees the eventual transport of Caspian Sea natural gas to Europe, they said.
This project would mark the first time former rivals Turkey and Greece will cooperate on a project of this scale, they added. Greek Development Minister Akis Chuhacopolus was to arrive in Turkey on March 28. He is scheduled to sign the deal with Turkey's development minister, Zeki Cakan, on behalf of their respective governments.

Turkey's pipeline company Botas and the Greek natural gas company, Depa, have been working on the project for nearly three years, Botas officials said. The project should begin a year after engineering plans and other technical details are completed, they told.
Although the countries have not yet decided on the pipeline's route, the most likely one would start in Ankara, travel through the western towns of Can and Ezine to the Dardanelles and into the Greek town of Alexandrupolis, the officials said. The pipeline is to be more than 170 miles long, with approximately 125 miles in Turkey and some 50 miles in Greece, according to Dimitri Sotirlis, director of the Greek Gas Company.

Chuhacopulos will go to Iran after his visit in Turkey for talks concerning the possible purchase of Iranian gas, a local agency said. Turkey purchases Iranian natural gas transported through a pipeline to Ankara. Greece and Turkey have long disputed rights over the divided island of Cyprus, and claims of rights on the Aegean Sea between the two countries.

Source: United Press International
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