Details added (first version posted on 13:38)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept.20
By Seymur Aliyev - Trend:
Southern Gas Corridor is a model of global cooperation, which is becoming a reality, the minister of Greece Antonis Samaras said Sept.20 in Baku at a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the Contract of the Century and the Southern Gas Corridor laying.
"It is a historical event. The Southern gas corridor is more than energy, infrastructure. It is a vision becoming reality, connecting Europe with Asia through energy supply, energy security. It is vision of long term cooperation of the countries and the people of such an extended region," he said.
"Indeed a model of global cooperation based on competitive prices, which generate growth and promote environmental sustainability. Greece was from the very beginning from the supporters of the Southern Corridor. Moreover it is one of the countries the corridor is passing through," the minister said.
"Construction of TAP is a top priority for my country and I follow it personally together with Minister of Environment, Energy and Climate Change, Yiannis Maniatis who is also here," the minister said.
"The Southern gas corridor is an open-ended project indeed the prospect of connecting TAP with other pipelines that would cross southeastern Europe seems to have many benefits. The Southern Gas Corridor has opened up a door for an area of possibilities. Among them moving forward with the vertical corridor utilizing the Greek-Bulgarian interconnector. As well as upgrading existent interconnectors and building new ones further north to Central Europe," he said.
"Tap and additional LNG suppliers through Greece will definitely cover the need of the vertical corridor. The Southern gas corridor providing energy supplies and energy safety are becoming a factor of long-term stability of global cooperation," Samaras said.
The TAP project was selected by the consortium of Azerbaijani Shah Deniz field development as the transportation route to the European markets.
The long pipeline will connect with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) near the Turkish-Greek border at Kipoi, cross Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in Southern Italy.
Construction of the pipeline is planned to start in 2016. The initial capacity of the pipeline will be 10 billion cubic meters per year, but it can easily be expanded to 20 billion cubic meters per year.
TAP's shareholding is comprised of BP (20 percent), SOCAR (20 percent), Statoil (20 percent), Fluxys (16 percent), Total (10 percent), E.ON (9 percent) and Axpo (5 percent).