Can TAP project be affected by DESFA deal?
Baku, Azerbaijan, April 26
By Leman Zeynalova - Trend:
The shareholdership in the consortium for construction of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), which envisages transportation of Azerbaijani gas to Europe and participation in the sales process of Greek DESFA gas grid operator are completely different things, a source in Belgian Fluxys company, which is one of the shareholders of TAP, told Trend.
The Board of Directors of the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (HRADF) unanimously accepted on April 19 the improved financial offer of the consortium composed of the companies Snam S.p.A., Enagás Internacional S.L.U. and Fluxys S.A, which are shareholders of TAP consortium.
The financial offer of the consortium for acquisition of 66 percent share in Hellenic Gas Transmission System Operator S.A. (DESFA) stands at 535 million euros.
“Both TAP and DESFA have physical presence in Greece, which may possibly generate synergies. It is nevertheless too early days to further elaborate on this topic. Fluxys’ shareholdership in TAP and Fluxys’ participation in the consortium as preferred bidder in the DESFA’s sales process are completely different things,” said the source.
TAP AG consortium declined to comment on the matter.
Earlier, the three companies issued a joint statement, saying that Snam, Enagás and Fluxys, shareholders of the TAP project, will be able to boost the development of the Greek gas infrastructure system in the coming years, fully realizing the potential of Greece as a natural gas hub, which will further leverage the development of the domestic market as well as other transit initiatives.
The signing of the agreements for the acquisition is subject to the completion of the further steps envisaged by the tender procedure and by local legislation on privatization, while the closing of the transaction is expected in the second half of the year, following the required authorizations including antitrust clearance.
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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