Doubts in economic expediency of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) oil pipeline either incompetent or spite, a new AzerbaijanвЂ™s Minister of Economic Development Heydar Babayev voiced such an opinion on Wednesday in his interview with RIA Novosti, Trend reports.
"All negative expertsвЂ™ appraisals around the BTC oil pipeline, statements either incompetent or politically spitefulвЂќ, he said.
"The uniqueness of the BTC Project is in its political reasonableness and economic expediencyвЂќ, the Minister underlined.
"The projectвЂ™s commercial attractiveness lies in joining it by other countries. TodayвЂ™s oil production volumes are initial. In the perspective, it will be dwelt upon on the rebirth of the oil refining industry of AzerbaijanвЂќ, Babayev cleared out.
"Members of the international oil consortia producing oil here also understand the need for the oil refining. The oil produced here is fully exported, but the time will come and we will start its refiningвЂќ, he noted.
Responding to the question, whether the Russian oil giants could join the rebirth of the AzerbaijanвЂ™s oil processing industry, the Minister said, that вЂњthe Russian Lukoil is involved in a number of projects in Azerbaijan. There are no other Russian companies in the AzerbaijanвЂ™s market so far. I do not know the reasonвЂќ, Babayev said.
"The issue of the Russian companiesвЂ™ involvement is always open for discussions and we are ready for proposals.
"It may be related to the internal reserves of the Russian companies. The external expansion starts when the internal reserves expireвЂќ, he assumed.