European Commissioner: Trans-Caspian pipeline decision may be made by June
Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan.26 / Trend A.Badalova /
A final decision on whether to go ahead with the Trans-Caspian Pipeline project may be made in June, the EU commissioner for energy Günther Oettinger told Interfax.
Oettinger said that the negotiations between the Commission and the officials from the Turkmen and Azerbaijani governments were "intensive" yet "constructive".
He added that the next meeting on the project will take place in a few days in Frankfurt.
The design capacity of the 300-kilometer-Trans-Caspian pipeline through the Caspian seabed between Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan is linked to Europe's demand for Turkmen gas and defining Caspian Sea status between the two countries.
Trans-Caspian project can become part of the "Southern Gas Corridor", designed to diversify gas supplies to Europe.
There is no direct agreement on the implementation of the Trans-Caspian gas pipeline yet. However, in September 2011 the European Union issued a mandate to start negotiations on an agreement between the EU, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan on the Trans-Caspian project. Negotiations are underway.
Despite the fact that construction of an underwater gas pipeline is associated with unresolved status of the Caspian Sea, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan believe that implementation of this project is the two states' sovereign right.