TAP expands opportunities for large European markets (Exclusive)

TAP expands opportunities for large European markets (Exclusive)

Baku, Azerbaijan, March 6

By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:

In line with EU regulation, any shipper who wishes to take part in open seasons of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) may do so as long as they comply with the requirements for participation, Lisa Givert, TAP Head of Communications, told Trend and Azernews commenting on the possibility of other countries joining the project.

Earlier, European Commission Vice-President for Energy Union Maros Sefcovic said that the EU is ready to discuss the possibility of connecting Iran to the Southern Gas Corridor. He also said that the EU continues to seek ways to connect Turkmenistan to the Southern Gas Corridor project at a press conference in Baku on February 15 following the Fourth Ministerial Meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council.

“TAP is the European leg of the Southern Gas Corridor, which is one of the most complex energy projects worldwide. While TAP will initially transport 10bcm/a from the Shah Deniz II field in Azerbaijan, our pipeline can double its capacity once additional gas resources come on stream,” Givert said.

TAP’s landfall in Italy provides multiple opportunities to some of the largest European markets such as Germany, France, the UK, Switzerland and Austria, according to TAP head of communications.

“TAP’s contribution to energy security and diversification will perhaps be most significant in South Eastern Europe. TAP remains committed to facilitating connections to several infrastructure projects such as the Interconnector Greece – Bulgaria (IGB) and the Ionian Adriatic Pipeline (IAP),” she noted.

Givert stressed that by cooperating with IGB and IAP, TAP plays a key role in facilitating greater interconnectivity and security of supply - key objectives of the European Energy Union.

“TAP also has reverse flow capability in the event of an emergency or potential cut off further upstream. We do want to emphasize that TAP neither owns the gas it transports, nor is it responsible for building physical infrastructure in South-Eastern Europe (beyond our 878km pipeline),” she said.

So, it is up to the various entities in the region to arrange commercial terms with potential suppliers of gas to ensure new and diversified sources reach their respective markets, according to Givert.

“As economic recovery continues, and coal-fired power generation is gradually phased out, it is expected that natural gas demand in South-Eastern Europe will grow, to power homes and industries,” she stressed.

So, TAP will enable the introduction of a cleaner energy source, therefore contributing to reducing carbon emissions and achieving environmental targets, according to Givert.

TAP project, worth 4.5 billion euros, is one of the priority energy projects for the European Union (EU). The project envisages transportation of gas from Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz Stage 2 to the EU countries.

Connecting with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) at the Greek-Turkish border, TAP will cross Northern Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea before coming ashore in Southern Italy to connect to the Italian natural gas network.

The project is currently in its construction phase, which started in 2016.

Once built, TAP will offer a direct and cost-effective transportation route opening up the vital Southern Gas Corridor, a 3,500-kilometer long gas value chain stretching from the Caspian Sea to Europe.

TAP shareholders include 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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Follow the author on Twitter: @Lyaman_Zeyn

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