Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept.14
By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:
The construction of the offshore section of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), which envisages transportation of Azerbaijani gas to Europe, will begin in 2019, TAP Managing Director Luca Schieppati said in an interview with Trend.
TAP continues to move further into its construction phase, he said, adding that every day, hundreds of meters along TAP’s Right of Way (RoW) in Greece and Albania are cleared, strung, welded, lowered into the trenches and backfilled, in line with the project construction schedule.
"By the end of the year, we expect approximately 85 percent of the pipeline right of way in Greece and Albania (765km in total) to be graded and cleared, and approximately 70 percent of steel pipes to have been placed in the ground (backfilled)," he said.
Schieppati pointed out that in parallel, preparations are ongoing for the offshore pipeline construction across the Adriatic Sea, which is due to take place in 2019.
"Our project schedule remains and TAP continues to work towards being ready to deliver first gas from Shah Deniz in 2020," he added.
Also, Schieppati noted that the construction of TAP’s compressor stations – one near Kipoi, in the east of Greece and one near Fier, in the west of Albania – began in the second quarter of 2017 and work is proceeding according to schedule and this will be a continuous activity over approximately two years.
"In addition to the two compressor stations, there is also a gas metering station being constructed near Bilisht, in the east of Albania. Works at the metering station commenced in the first quarter of 2017 and work is progressing well," he added.
TAP is a part of the Southern Gas Corridor, which is one of the priority energy projects for the European Union. The project envisages transportation of gas from Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz Stage 2 to the EU countries.
The pipeline will connect to the Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) on the Turkish-Greek border, run through Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in Italy’s south.
TAP will be 878 kilometers in length (Greece 550 kilometers, Albania 215 kilometers, Adriatic Sea 105 kilometers, and Italy 8 kilometers).
TAP’s shareholding is comprised of BP (20 percent), SOCAR (20 percent), Snam S.p.A. (20 percent), Fluxys (19 percent), Enagás (16 percent) and Axpo (5 percent).
Follow the author on Twitter: @Lyaman_Zeyn