Bloomberg News

Turkish-Azeri Gas Pipeline Deal Expected in January, Socar Says

December 20, 2011

Dec. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Turkish and Azeri energy officials aim to finish an agreement by January on a new pipeline to ship natural gas from the BP Plc-operated Shah Deniz field to Europe via Turkey, an Azeri energy official said today.

“Any company that has gas” can join the venture to build a pipe from Turkey’s eastern border to the west, said Rovnaq Abdullayev, president of State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan, or Socar. Many members of Shah Deniz have shown interest, he said in an interview in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi.

The Trans-Anatolian pipeline, which may cost $6 billion to $7 billion and have a capacity of 21 billion cubic meters a year, is planned to be completed by 2017 when the second phase of Shah Deniz starts producing gas, the state-owned Anatolia News Agency said last month, citing Socar Vice President Vaqif Aliyev. The project seems more “do-able” than the European Union-backed Nabucco pipeline, he was quoted as saying.

The Shah Deniz group is looking at Nabucco “seriously” and questions still remain on the project, Abdullayev said. The group will opt for less expensive transit options, he said.

--Editors: Alex Devine, Randall Hackley

To contact the reporter on this story: Zulfugar Agayev in Baku at zagayev@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Hellmuth Tromm at htromm@bloomberg.net


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