Azerbaijan, Baku, July 31 / Trend, E. Tariverdiyeva /
The deepening of strategic relations with Azerbaijan is a priority for Georgia, Georgian ambassador to Azerbaijan Teimuraz Sharashenidze said during a press conference in Baku on Wednesday.
"Almost the entire staff of the Georgian government and Prime Minister has visited Azerbaijan," the ambassador added. "This signifies the importance of preserving our South Caucasus partnership."
"Common challenges, such as territorial integrity and economic development outside of the capital are paramount issues to both governments," he added.
"Choosing TAP as a transport route to Europe will bring about $2 billion in investments in the Georgian economy and create jobs," he said. "The Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project is also very important."
"Cooperation between Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey is very important for Tbilisi," the ambassador added. "Azerbaijani business have already invested $210 million in the country's economy."
In late June, the consortium for the development of the Shah Deniz field announced that TAP will be the route used to transport gas to European markets.
The TAP project is designed to transport gas from the Caspian region via Greece and Albania and across the Adriatic Sea to Southern Italy and then to Western Europe.
The gas which will be produced in the second phase of the Azerbaijani Shah Deniz field, is considered to be the main gas source of the project.
The initial capacity of the TAP pipeline will be 10 billion cubic meters per year with the possibility to expand operations 20 billion cubic meters per year.
Currently, shares in TAP are distributed as follows: BP (20 percent), SOCAR (20 percent), Statoil (20 percent), Fluxys (16 percent), Total (10 percent), E.ON (9 percent) and Axpo (5 percent).
The construction of TAP is expected to start in 2015.
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