Nabucco expects open season to launch in late 2010
Azerbaijan, Baku, June 1 / Trend A.Badalova /
The Nabucco pipeline project intends to launch the execution phase of the open season process by late 2010-early 2011. An open season process is a special form of capacity auction allowing potential shippers to express their interest in the pipeline and to make firm bookings. The process includes both a preparatory and an execution phase.
During the preparatory phase, Nabucco will work on the harmonization of the contractual framework in line with regulatory requirements; the division of responsibilities between NIC and the Nabucco National Companies for the handling of transportation issues.
During the execution phase, potential shippers will be invited to express their interest in the project and make firm bookings for pipeline transport capacity. This phase includes a separate shareholder shipper bid phase and a separate all shipper (i.e. including third party as well as shareholder shipper) bid phase. The open season will first be addressed to the Nabucco Shareholders for an amount up to 15 bcm per year (i.e. ca. 50% of Nabucco's transportation capacity). In the second step, Nabucco will offer the remaining 50 percent to external companies ("third party access"), offering them the same conditions and transparency.
In this procedure all market participants will have the possibility of securing long-term contracts, the company reported.
"In the open season the transport capacity booking will start and transportation contracts will be concluded," Nabucco Gas Pipeline International GmbH Spokesperson Christian Dolezal wrote Trend in an e-mail earlier.
In February, the German company Bayerngas announced about plans to book capacity in the Nabucco pipeline project to bring fuel supplies from the Caspian region to Europe. The company did not announce what capacity it plans to book.
Nabucco gas pipeline project is worth €7.9 billion. Participants of the project are Austrian OMV, Hungarian MOL, Bulgarian Bulgargaz, Romanian Transgaz, Turkish Botas and German RWE companies. Each of participants has equal share to the amount of 16.67 percent. Construction of gas pipeline is planned to be launched in 2011, the first supplies - in 2014. Maximal capacity of the pipeline will hit 31 billion cubic meters per year. Nabucco Gas Pipeline International shareholders will invest 30 percent of total cost of the project, the rest 70 percent will be paid owing to loans.