Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22
By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:
No discussions have been held yet on expanding the capacity of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), which envisages transportation of Azerbaijani gas to Europe, TAP president Walter Peeraer told Reuters.
“The capacity on the TAP pipeline will be expanded when enough customers express interest but there have been no discussions yet. It is therefore premature to discuss if Russia’s Gazprom might take capacity,” he added.
Earlier this year Gazprom’s deputy head Alexander Medvedev said the company was considering pumping gas through the link.
As for rerouting the pipeline, Peeraer said the landfall site, which had been chosen from 20 other locations for its minimal environmental impact, would not be changed. Such a move could put the project back 4-5 years, he added.
“The commitment is to transport about 8 to 10 bcm to Italian shores. Re-routing through Albania is not an option. There is no Plan B,” he noted.
Regarding the project’s financing by the European Investment Bank (EIB), Peeraer said talks with the Bank are ongoing, adding he expects a decision in February.
Peeraer said TAP is on track to deliver the gas in the first quarter of 2020.
TAP worth 4.5 billion euros 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).
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