Natik Aliyev, the Azerbaijani Minister for Energy & Industry, stated on 12 October that the exploitation of the Azerbaijani gas field Shah Deniz will begin in December 2006, Trend reports.
This will enable Azerbaijan to receive an additional supply of its own gas. Russia and Iranian gas might be a source of fuel for Azerbaijan in 2007, as well as fuel produced in its own fields. We are working on it, the Minister stated.
It is not necessary to define the Russian gas prices as yet. Azerbaijan is investigating the processes in Russia and Europe as well as the talks that Russia is holding with other countries. Azerbaijan is particularly interested in the price of gas that Russia will sell to the Ukraine, including Belorus and Moldova, he said.
Aliyev said that if the price of Russian gas meets Azerbaijan's requirements in 2007, the Country will continue to import it. However, if they are too high, Azerbaijan has many other alternatives to choose from, he stressed.