Nabucco & South Stream: who to cope with task better

Oil&Gas Materials 14 December 2009 21:50 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Dec. 14 / Trend A.Badalova /

The main geo-strategic challenges at the top of the European agenda, mainly key businesses in the field of security and energy security was discussed at the Nabucco & South Stream: new prospects for European energy security forum organized by the Swiss international organization Crans Montana Forum in Vienna Dec.10-12. Trend agency was the media partner of the event. The Caspian Investment Centre was the co-partner.

The issues of improving Europe's energy security have become even more relevant after the gas crisis, almost a year ago, when the European countries were victims of the Russian-Ukrainian that led to the termination of fuel supplies to the western neighbors.

Europe sees the diversification of routes and sources of energy supplies as one solution to the problem, as well as a way to avoid a recurrence. In this sense, the Nabucco pipeline project designed to transport natural gas from the Caspian region to the EU countries is a priority for Europe. Russia's South Stream project is often viewed as a competitive pipeline to Nabucco.

The Vienna forum aimed to discuss the major geo-strategic challenges that Europe faced with was focused on the current situation and prospects of these two projects.

The issue of funding was among the discussed matters. Recently, the Nabucco gas pipeline consortium has announced the commencement of detailed negotiations with potential lenders of the project: EBRD, EIB, as well as export credit agencies. Member of the EBRD Board of Directors Kalin Mitrev said the international financial institutions such as EBRD, EIB and IFC can provide from one to 1.5 billion euros for Nabucco. According Mitrev, the EBRD could contribute to the project with the help of structured finance and syndicated loans.

Azerbaijan and Iraq are reviewed as the main suppliers for the Nabucco pipeline project. Addressing the forum, Head of SOCAR (State Oil Company of Azerbaijan) office in Vienna Gulmirza Javadov said that the basic principles of Azerbaijan's energy policy is to meet its energy needs, ensure complete safety of the state and increase the role and importance of Azerbaijan in the global economy, as well as to create a reliable corridor on energy supplies to the EU market.

In addition to issues of the European energy security, the forum discussed the prospects for new projects, Russia's energy role in the South-Eastern Europe, the development of nuclear energy and other issues.

Representatives of governments, international organizations and companies, particularly, OPEC, the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources of Saudi Arabia, Total, Chevron, the European Investment Bank, BG Group, the Islamic Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Caspian Investment Centre have attended the forum.

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