Azerbaijan, Baku, June 14 / Trend E. Kosolapova/
The European Union does not see any political and environmental obstacles to construct TransCaspian gas pipeline through the Caspian Sea, the head of the EU office in Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan Aurelia Bouchez said on Thursday, Novosti-Kazakhstan reported.
"The EU completely supports the ongoing work (on TransCaspian gas pipeline project development), and is already working with the two states which have decided to build a gas pipeline in their territorial waters," Bouchez said at the oil and gas conference "Development of the Caspian Sea Shelf 2012."
The TransCaspian gas pipeline will have a length of about 300 kilometers and be laid on the Turkmen coast of the Caspian Sea. The pipeline will be connected to Azerbaijan where it will link to the South Corridor. Russia opposes the project due to unresolved status of the Caspian Sea, and environmental risks.
Bouchez added that the EU has no specific position on the legal status of the Caspian Sea, because "this matter should be settled between the five littoral states." At the same time, the unresolved status of the Caspian Sea and poses no obstacles for construction and operation of oil and gas pipelines, she said.
"In our opinion there is no need to delimit borders for construction of pipeline through the Caspian Sea. The pipelines can be built through the borders, which of course exist though their status has not been agreed yet. Such problems happen quite often in the EU. In particular, we had some similar problems in the North Sea," Bouchez said.
Moreover, TransCaspian gas pipeline poses no environmental risks, Bouchez said.
"The EU-funded research revealed no environmental problem, which can hamper Trans-Caspian gas pipeline construction," EU representative said.
Meanwhile, the EU is ready to finance the work in this area to solve all possible environmental problems, Bouchez added.
According to the report of British Petroleum (BP), Turkmenistan ranks fourth in terms of the natural gas reserves after Russia, Iran and Qatar. The largest fields are located in the Mary region in the east of the country, Southern Yoloten - Osman (recently merged and renamed to Galkynysh) and Yashlar with shared resources, estimated by local geologists and British GCA within 26.2 trillion cubic meters.
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