Azerbaijan, Baku, November 5 / Trend, E. Ismailov /
The Shah Deniz Consortium within a year will take a decision to choose a route of Azerbaijani gas export to Europe, Rovnag Abdullayev, Head of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) told journalists on Saturday.
He said gas supply to Europe through the existing Turkey's infrastructure is a complex process and thus it was decided to explore the opportunity of constructing a new gas pipeline in this country's territory.
Studies will be carried out and a feasibility study will be drafted under this alternative route, Abdullayev said. Whether the project is economically expedient will be decided on the basis of the feasibility study.
Abdullayev said possible construction of a new gas pipeline will not prevent implementation of the Southern Gas Corridor projects, particularly, Nabucco.
Baku and Ankara want to construct the new gas pipeline to ensure gas supplies from the eastern borders of Turkey to the west - to borders of Turkey with Bulgaria, or Greece.
The Nabucco project is designed to transport gas from the Caspian region and the Middle East to EU countries. The project, worth 7.9 billion euro, is planned to start construction in 2013 and the first supplies will be commissioned in 2017. The gas produced within the second phase of the Azerbaijani Shah Deniz Field is considered to be the main gas source for these projects.
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, TAP and ITGI (Turkey-Greece-Italy pipeline).