BAKU, Azerbaijan, January 13
Next month Baku will once again host a meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said in an interview with local TV channels on January 12, 2022, Trend reports.
“The implementation of the Southern Gas Corridor is unequivocally a historic event, and the implementation of this huge energy project with such a high quality and in a difficult geopolitical situation required tremendous effort. Azerbaijan has mobilized several countries as a team. We achieved this together, and next month Baku will once again host a meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council, which is traditionally held in Baku on our initiative. Every time I personally attend these meetings and there is a broad exchange of views on the work to be done. The number of participating countries is already increasing. In addition, all leading banks are involved – the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the European Investment Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Asian Infrastructure Bank. So these are all leading financial institutions, as well as companies. Therefore, the importance of the Southern Gas Corridor is perhaps more visible in Europe now. Because this gas crisis has shaken them to a great extent – both prices, gas shortages and the fact that gas storage facilities are not full,” Azerbaijani president said.
“Winter is only just beginning and is expected to be very harsh. Therefore, the lack of gas will lead to serious complications. The volume of Azerbaijani gas is not so great, but it can prove critical for several countries. And, of course, first of all, our interests are served here. Because if this pipeline had not been built, we would have been sitting on the rich gas reserves, as they say, waiting for something to happen. If it hadn’t been for this prospect, no company would have invested billions, tens of billions of dollars in the development of these fields. At present, exports are growing, new figures have been presented to me. About 19 billion cubic meters of gas will be exported this year. More than 8 billion of it will be exported to Turkey and more than 7 billion to Italy. The remaining gas will be divided between Georgia, Bulgaria and Greece. This is a large number. At the same time, domestic demand is growing and will continue to grow. We are meeting domestic demand. In general, Azerbaijan is expected to produce 45 billion cubic meters of gas. As I mentioned, 19 billion will go to exports and the rest will be spent on re-injection into the oil fields to maintain domestic demand and reservoir pressure. This is a large volume and, of course, it will enable us to meet our needs, as well as enter the European space with larger volumes. It is our project that has also facilitated the construction of interconnectors and connections between European countries, and work is being done in this area. Thus, physically, i.e. from the point of view of infrastructure, we can deliver our gas to other countries, taking into account the fact that Shah Deniz has great potential. It is true that the approved volume is more than 1 trillion cubic meters. But I am sure that there will be more, as was the case in Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli. Preliminary estimates put the figure at 500 million tons, but its potential already exceeds 1 billion tons. In addition, the Absheron gas field will be commissioned in the future. Umid, Babek, Asiman, i.e. many of our gas fields will gradually become operational and our volume will increase significantly. This is our great advantage. It will also bring additional funds to our country, expand our country's international capabilities and, of course, this factor will continue to play an important role in EU-Azerbaijan relations,” the head of state said.