European Commission says Russia can use Trans Adriatic Pipeline
Baku, Azerbaijan, March 6
By Aygun Badalova - Trend:
Russia can use the Trans Adкiatic Pipeline (TAP) from a regulatory and political perspective, for shipping its gas to the EU countries, if the country builds the "Turkish Stream" pipeline, EurActiv reported citing Brendan Devlin, advisor in the European Commission's DG energy (Directorate-General for Energy).
Speaking at a conference on "post-South Stream", organised by the Martens Centre for European Studies, Devlin said that it was unlikely another big pipeline except for the Southern Gas Corridor would appear in South Eastern Europe, because "the markets are too small" in the region.
He also noted that TAP has a provision for a 50-percent expansion in the event there is a shipper other than Azerbaijan (from initial 10 billion cubic meters to 20 billion), while Russia's "Turkish Stream's" capacity will be 63 billion cubic meters per year.
"It doesn't matter who the shipper is, and we don't care if it is Russian gas, Libyan gas, Azerbaijani gas. The internal market works like that. It's the rules that we have set up for Russia, or for Gazprom," Devlin said.
"And as we require them to implement those rules, they are free and welcome to use pipelines in the European Union on the same basis," he added.
At the same time he told EurActiv that it would take many years before Russia completes the Turkish Stream project.
"In the meantime, the Azeri gas from the TAP pipeline would have priority finding clients, long before eventual Russian gas arrives from the same pipe," he said.
The Southern Gas Corridor is one of the priority energy projects for the EU. The project is aimed at diversification of routes and sources of energy supply and thereby increase EU's energy security. It envisages the delivery of gas from Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz gas and condensate field to Europe.
The gas to be produced as part of the second stage of the field's development will be exported to Turkey and European markets through the expansion of the South Caucasus Pipeline and the construction of Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) and the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP).
Turkish Stream pipeline, initiated by Russia after its ceasinf the South Stream gas pipeline, has been proposed to be constructe across the Black Sea to Turkey with a projected capacity of 63 billion cubic meters of gas per year.
Of these, some 14 billion cubic meters of gas is intended for delivery to Turkey and the remaining volumes, about 50 billion cubic meters of gas, will be delivered to the border of Turkey with Greece.
The gas pipeline is projected to run on 660-kilometer section of the route, on which it was planned to build the South Stream, and on 250-kilometer section in a new corridor towards the European part of Turkey.
It is also planned that the first line of the pipeline, with a pumping capacity of 15.75 billion cubic meters of gas per year, will be stretched to Turkey in December 2016.
Aygun Badalova is Trend Agency's staff journalist, follow her on Twitter:@AygunBadalova