EU should focus more on Turkmenistan in Nabucco: U.S. analyst
Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct. 31 / Trend , K.Konyrova, A.Badalova/
The European Union (EU) will pay more attention to the Turkmen gas in the Nabucco gas pipeline project. The Senior Fellow of the U.S. the Jamestown Foundation, Vladimir Socor believes the volume of gas in the five billion cubic meters, which can be offered by the EU to Turkmenistan to transport through the Nabucco pipeline, is small, and the Central Asian nation should not quarrel with Russia be because of this volume.
"The volume should be so large that it would be advantageous for Turkmenistan," Socor believes. He said the Nabucco gas pipeline whose maximum capacity will be 31 billion cubic meters per year, is mostly designed for gas from Azerbaijan, Iraq and Egypt.
The Nabucco project worth 7.9 billion euro will deliver Azerbaijani and Central Asian gas to the EU. Construction of the pipeline is expected to begin in 2011 and the first supplies - in 2014.
However, Socor said the Nabucco gas pipeline is only part of an ambitious EU project "Southern Corridor", proposed in November last year, which, according to the EU plans, should transport some 80 billion cubic meters of gas per year. In the project offered, Socor said, the EU plans to use the resources of Central Asia.
Turkmenistan has huge reserves, and a main task currently is to open a direct access to Turkmenistan to Europe, bypassing Russia - that is the way via the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus, the American analyst believes.
"At present it is a big political problem," said Socor.
Turkmenistan ranks fourth in the world on natural gas reserves, following Russia, Iran and Qatar. According to BP, as for early 2009, the proven gas reserves in Turkmenistan amounted to 7.94 trillion cubic meters, accounting for 4.3 percent of world reserves. Gas production in the country in 2008, according to BP, amounted to 66.1 billion cubic meters, which is 0.7 percent more than production in 2007.
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