EU Estimates TransCaspian Energy Projects
Kazakhstan, Astana, 15 October / corr Trend K.Konirova / The European Union continues to consider Georgia, as the main country in development of the Southern corridor, which is necessary for the EU to diversify energy sources, Norber Justen, head of EU's office in Kazakhstan, told Trend correspondent in Astana.
"We did not change our position on TransCaspian Projects in connection with the last developments [in Georgia]. Southern corridor is necessary for protection and reliability of energy supplies to the EU and I am sure that it meets the interests of extractive countries. We continue to consider Georgia as a main country in this regard," Justen said.
Presently, the EU estimates technical and legal opportunities with its partner-countries and also with Kazakhstan to carry out the TransCaspian projects, head of EU's office said.
"It is an intricate issue and it is not dealt with the presence of mountains and sea in the way of pipe-laying. We continue our efforts to estimate possible variants," Justen said. "We are interested in the development of Southern corridor, as we want it to exist," he said.
Preliminary cost of construction of the TransCaspian subsea gas pipeline is estimated to $11.5bln (at present price of services and materials). Its discharge capacity can make up to 22bln cubic meters of gas per year. Technical conditions to lay this pipeline are more favorable than those of the pipeline on 'Blue stream" project (from Russia to Turkey in bottom of the Black sea), experts said. Smaller depths in the Caspian sea and more favorable natural environment as compared to the Black Sea are the reasons for it.
This pipeline can be connected to the South Caucasian gas pipeline, which currently transports gas from Azerbaijani Shah Deniz gas field to Turkey via Georgia at present. Possibility of transportation of this gas via Greece and Bulgaria to Italy and Europe in future is being considered at present.
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