Details added (first version posted on 14:52)
Baku, Azerbaijan, June 1
Gas output from the Shah Deniz field will be more than the estimated, said Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev.
He made the remarks June 1 addressing a meeting with the Shah Deniz 2 project staff as part of a ceremony for sail away of the first topsides unit built for the Shah Deniz Stage 2 platforms from the Azfen construction site in Bibiheybat.
“I congratulate you on this wonderful event. This day will go down in history, because today, we officially announce the opening of the topsides units for the Shah Deniz platform. In a few days, these giant facilities will be sent to the sea and installed on the Shah Deniz field,” noted the Azerbaijani president.
This is a big historic event, said President Aliyev, adding it is very gratifying that these giant facilities have completely been built in Azerbaijan.
He noted that several years ago, particularly, when the contract for the Shah Deniz field was signed, it was impossible to imagine this.
“I would like to note that the Shah Deniz contract was signed 21 years ago in June during the Caspian Oil and Gas Exhibition. And after 21 years, we celebrate this historic day. All these facilities have been built in Azerbaijan. According to the information provided to me, majority of those who worked in the construction of these facilities – 90 percent – are citizens of Azerbaijan,” added the president.
This means that over the years, a great human potential has been formed, he said.
“This, of course, will strengthen the energy potential, economic potential of our country, because 16 billion cubic meters of gas as well as enough condensate will be additionally produced as part of the Shah Deniz 2 only. Contracts have been signed on all the natural resources that are to be extracted, they have buyers, and they will be sent to the world markets through the Southern Gas Corridor, which is under construction,” said the president.
He emphasized that each implemented project – TANAP, TAP, Southern Gas Corridor, Shah Deniz 2, the construction of the platforms, the recent opening of a semi-submersible drilling rig named after Heydar Aliyev – is separately a historic event.
“But, looking at them in general, we see what a great potential has been created in Azerbaijan,” added President Aliyev.
The Azerbaijani president noted that this is indeed a historic day.
“Twenty-one years after the signing of the contract on Shah Deniz, today, we celebrate a day of historic significance. Today, first of all, I would like to express my gratitude to BP – our strategic partner that has been a close friend of Azerbaijan for many years. The signing of the Contract of the Century in 1994 was the beginning of our cooperation. There are many companies that since then have worked together with us and continue to work,” said President Aliyev.
“To remind and inform you, I would like to say that then Azerbaijan signed a contract on Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli with a consortium of foreign oil companies, and BP was one of them. It had a big share and there was a big partnership that continues today with certain changes,” added the president.
The head of state noted that special relations with BP are based on the fact that since then the company has been an active player in Azerbaijan’s energy market and the global energy market.
“From that time until today, many other contracts have been signed that turned our partnership into a strategic partnership. Shah Deniz is one of them. The next are the “shallow waters” and others. This is a good indicator of partnership. We trust BP. I am sure that BP also trusts Azerbaijan. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have invested so many funds in our country,” said President Aliyev.
He said Gary Jones, BP regional president for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, noted yesterday and today that the investment space is number one in the activity of BP Azerbaijan.
“This further strengthens our cooperation,” added the president.
Ilham Aliyev said there is work underway to extend the term of the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli contract.
“I hope this will take place soon. Our partnership at the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli will continue until 2050. I am confident that gas output at Shah Deniz will be more than the estimated. We called the Azeri-Chirag the “Contract of the Century”, but now I speak of the contract of centuries. I would like to once again express gratitude to all our partners for the investments put in Azerbaijan and the successful activity, to the partners of Shah Deniz and the companies that built this unique facility. The international team working in Azerbaijan is helping the development of our country. I think the host country is creating a unique atmosphere of cooperation between the local company SOCAR and foreign investors. I congratulate you once again. I wish you success in the upcoming years. Thank you,” said the Azerbaijani president.