TAP open to Greek, Italian partners
Azerbaijan, Baku, March 30 / Trend A.Badalova /
Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) would welcome Greek and Italian partners in a project, which envisages the construction of a pipeline to transport gas from the Caspian region through Greece and Albania and across the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy and further into Western Europe, Bloomberg reported with reference to TAP Country Manager for Greece Rikard Scoufias.
"We're open to discussing new partnerships at a shareholder level and looking at our host countries, we'd welcome a Greek and/or Italian partner," Scoufias said in an interview with Bloomberg in Athens.
TAP is one of the Southern Gas Corridor projects, selected by the Consortium of Azerbaijani Shah Deniz gas field development as a priority route to export Azerbaijani gas to Italy.
Another project - ITGI (Interconnector Turkey-Greece-Italy) was excluded by the consortium from the list of those being considered to export Azerbaijani gas to the European countries. The shareholders of ITGI are Greek DEPA and Italian Edison.
"The Shah Deniz Consortium is the decision maker, they've made a decision and they've continuously emphasized that it's unanimous and final," Scoufias said.
At present, Shah Deniz Consortium considers options to export gas to the southern and central Europe, which include Nabucco West and SEEP. The pipeline route to this direction will be selected by late June, 2012.
The final decision on a pipeline route to export Azerbaijani gas to the European markets is expected to be made in 2013.
Construction of TAP will start in 2015, if the project is selected as the preferred gas transportation solution by Shah Deniz consortium.
The initial pipeline capacity of TAP will be 10 billion cubic meters per year, expandable to 20 billion cubic meters per year. TAP's shareholders are EGL of Switzerland (42.5 percent), Norway's Statoil (42.5 percent) and E.ON Ruhrgas of Germany (15 percent).