Baku, Azerbaijan , Nov. 29
By Viktoriya Zhavoronkova -Trend:
The EU remains fully committed to finalising negotiations on the Trans-Caspian gas pipeline soon, a source in the Energy Department of the European Commission told Trend. "These negotiations are still ongoing," the source, who asked not to be identified, added.
The participants of the EU Eastern Partnership Summit, held in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius, acknowledged the key developments towards the opening of the Southern Gas Corridor, including the planned modernisation of the South Caucasus Pipeline (SCP), the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) and the development of other gas transport infrastructures directly linking the Caspian Region with the EU.
Earlier, the European Union's interim Charge d'Affaires in Turkmenistan, Denis Daniilidis said that now favourable conditions have been created to conclude an agreement for the implementation of the Trans-Caspian Gas Pipeline, which, if constructed, will link Turkmen gas to Azerbaijan . According to Daniilidis, the EU and Azerbaijan are in the final stage of the negotiation process.
Experts believe, the project for construction of a 300km gas pipeline from Turkmenistan to Azerbaijan through the Caspian Sea to be one of the best options for linking Turkmen resources to the European market.
The Trans-Caspian project may become part of the Southern Gas Corridor, a route, intended to bring gas from the Caspian region to the European market.
Azerbaijan expressed its readiness to provide its territory, transit opportunities and infrastructure for the project.
"The Southern Gas Corridor, including the Trans-Caspian Pipeline, remains a key policy priority for the European external energy policy," the source added."The EU has made very good progress with the countries along the routes on establishing the Southern Gas Corridor over the past year."
Various important decisions were taken over the past few months, including the opening of the Southern Gas Corridor by the Shah Deniz II consortium to deliver gas to Europe, he said.
The 'final investment decision' is expected soon, according to the EU source.
"But this is only the beginning of the Southern Gas Corridor, as we expect the project to grow swiftly, bringing more volumes of gas from more countries in the Caspian region, not only from Azerbaijan , to Europe," continued the source.