Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 24
By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:
Ankara hopes that Moscow will not stop supplying gas to Turkey amid deteriorating bilateral relations, Berat Albayrak, Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, said, the Turkish Sabah newspaper wrote Dec. 24.
The minister said that currently, some 56 percent of Turkey's imported gas accounted for Russia.
He said that Turkey will continue diversifying the sources of gas to supply to the country.
"Ankara continues negotiating with the countries-importers of gas," Albayrak said.
The relations between Moscow and Ankara greatly deteriorated after Turkish Air Force shot down a Russian Su-24 bomber in Turkey's airspace Nov. 24.
A number of Turkish media reported that Russia may stop supplying natural gas to Turkey.
While commenting on this information, the deputy head of the Energy Market Regulatory Authority Mehmet Erturk said that Russia can not stop supplying gas to Turkey, primarily for legal reasons. The countries signed the intergovernmental purchase-sale agreements.
"The Turkish market is very important for Russia," Erturk said. "If Russia stops supplying gas to Turkey, it will undermine its credibility in Europe, to which it also makes supplies."
In accordance with two contracts signed with Turkey, Russia is committed to annually supply gas amounting to 20 b c m to the country.
The first contract to provide Turkey with 16 b c m of Russian gas was signed in 1997, and it expires in late 2025. The second contract, for the supply of four b c m of gas, was signed in 1998 and expires in 2021.
In 2014, Turkey was the second largest importer of Russian gas after Germany - Ankara purchased 27.3 b c m of gas from Gazprom.
Turkey is also importing 6.6 b c m of gas per year from Azerbaijan on the basis of a 'take or pay' contract. Turkey also buys gas from Iran. Ankara also has agreements with Algeria and Nigeria for the supply of 4.4 b c m and 1.2 b c m of liquefied gas per year, respectively.
Qatar is ready to ensure Turkey's gas demand and start exporting liquefied natural gas in the volumes required for Ankara, Qatar's ambassador to Turkey Salim Mubarak said Dec. 17.
Doha and Ankara signed an agreement on supplying some 1.2 b c m of liquefied gas to Turkey. The agreement was signed during the Turkish president's visit to Qatar in early December.
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