BAKU, Azerbaijan, June 1. The demand for Azerbaijani gas grows rapidly, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said addressing 27th International Caspian Oil & Gas Exhibition on the sidelines of the Baku Energy Week, Trend reports.
"Last year Azerbaijan exported 22 billion cubic meters of natural gas, this year the projection is 24, and the next year it will be even more. There can be different figures depending on the activity of production and also on activation of other fields which are situated in Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea, because our gas potential is not limited only with Shah Daniz. Other fields are also very promising. Some of them will start production next year. So that will be an important contribution to energy security, especially now, when the demand for Azerbaijani hydro carbons is more than ever before. And we, as a responsible country take that into account and we try to support countries which due to different reasons face difficulties. Now corresponding structures of Azerbaijan are in permanent contact with growing number of countries. When we were working on implementation of Southern Gas Corridor we established a very close cooperation with countries through the territory of which the pipeline crosses and also international financial institutions and, of course, energy companies and governments of leading countries, and also European Commission. So annual meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council which takes place every February in Baku is a clear example of this team work. And when on February 4 this year, we had the annual meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council, we actually thought that the biggest part of our plans has already been implemented. The Southern Gas Corridor is already in operation. Now we need only to work how to build new bridges, how to build new connections into connectors, and how to expand our presence on European gas market. But, of course, now when we speak on 1 June, the situation is completely different. And the demand for Azerbaijani gas grows rapidly. Of course, we need to take that into account but at the same time our potential consumers should also understand that it is not possible to extract large volumes of gas within one year. For that we need contracts, we need to start and speed up negotiations. We need, of course, to work with our traditional partners, investors, energy companies in order to increase the production. And also we need to expand the existing facilities. That was something which we did not plan in the coming years, because the Southern Gas Corridor as they said is an integrated pipeline system consisting of three pipelines. The last segment of it the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline’s capacity is 10 billion cubic meters.
So, now we think about the expansion, because there is a demand for that. And that, of course, will take time, take a lot of financial resources, and also close coordination, cooperation and active dialogue with all countries involved. And we are ready for that. Minister of Energy of Azerbaijan and SOCAR already got all my instructions and they are in the process of active negotiations," the head of state said.