Turkey still likely to get a share of Nabucco gas: energy minister
Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Taner Yildiz denied Sunday reports that Turkey gave up its right to receive 15 percent of the natural gas supplied via the Nabucco pipeline, saying the country is likely to get a larger share instead, Xinhua reported.
Local newspapers reported Sunday an intergovernmental agreement for the Nabucco project, which will be signed Monday in the Turkish capital Ankara, did not include Turkey's earlier reported demand for the right to use 15 percent of the gas transmitted by the pipeline.
Turkey had not been granted a right to use 15 percent of the gas, which amounts to 4.5 billion cubic meters a year, hence there is no point saying it abandons such a right, the semi-official Anadolu news agency quoted Yildiz as saying.
However, "we have an opportunity to receive more than 15 percent of the natural gas provided through the Nabucco pipeline," the minister told the agency.
The 3,300-kilometer-long Nabucco pipeline is designed to pump gas from the Caspian region to Austria through Turkey. The route, which also goes through European Union (EU) member states Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary, bypasses Russia, the largest gas supplier for Europe.
Talks between Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Austria on the pipeline started in January and were finalized last month. The five countries will sign an agreement concerning the project's legal framework on Monday.
The pipeline will ultimately be able to pump 31 billion cubic meters of gas per year by 2020, or about 5 to 10 percent of the total gas consumption of the EU by that time.
Construction of the pipeline was expected to begin in 2010 with a total cost of 7.9 billion euros (11 billion U.S. dollars).