Implementing Trans-Caspian gas pipeline project depends on investors

Oil&Gas Materials 29 April 2011 15:07 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, April 29 / Trend V. Zhavoronkova /
The implementation of the Trans-Caspian gas pipeline designed to link Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan will depend on investors, U.S. expert on energy issues of the former Soviet republics and Eastern Europe Adnan Vatansever said.

"The investors will primarily affect the realization of the Trans-Caspian project," Senior Fellow for Energy and Climate Program at the Carnegie Endowment Vatansever told Trend.

The 300-kilometer-gas pipeline will be laid from the Turkmen coast of the Caspian Sea to Azerbaijan where it will join to the transportation routes of the Southern Energy Corridor.

Besides investments, other factors influence the construction of the pipeline.

The project implementation is delayed. One of the reasons is the unresolved issue of the legal status of the Caspian Sea, the experts said.
Baku hosted a meeting of the working group on the convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea on April 26-27. The observers placed certain expectations.

It is difficult to predict the result of the negotiations on the Caspian Sea held in Baku, he said.

He said that the Caspian countries are still trying to find a mutually acceptable solution for all the parties when gas exports from Turkmenistan has become a particularly important issue as the exports from Kazakhstan.

"Whenever the issue of creating the pipelines through the sea becomes urgent, the problem [the legal status of the Caspian Sea] is again in the spotlight, as its solution is important for achieving progress in this issue," he said.

He said that the problem of the Caspian legal status has not been resolved yet mainly because of the two countries in the region - Russia and Iran. They are not particularly interested in resolving this issue, as it is contrary to their interests and positions of these countries have been relatively constant.

"When it deals with the status of the Caspian Sea, I see no weighty reason to change these positions by the countries," he said.

He said that the issue of bringing gas from Turkmenistan to Europe becomes more and more important.
The South Corridor is a priority EU energy project diversifying energy supply routes and sources and increasing EU energy security. The Southern Corridor includes the Nabucco gas pipeline, Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), White Stream, and ITGI (Turkey-Greece-Italy pipeline).