WEEKLY ECONOMIC REVIEW

33 local companies participated in the 13th international Caspian oil and gas 2006 exhibition and conference last in week in Azerbaijan Azeri exhibit area rose by 36%, number of companies by 20%.

in 2004 Azeri companies totaled 25 and in 2005 - 28. In general, the exhibition hosts 360 companies from 33 countries of the world.

The world communitys interests in the Azerbaijani oil and gas reserves of Azerbaijan increase every year. For instance, 26% of the participants were the new companies, which for the first time participated in the Baku show. This factor promotes the attraction of new investments in the oil sector. So far the foreign companies have invested over $20bn in oil and gas projects in Azerbaijan Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev stated to the opening ceremony of the exhibition on 6 June that attraction of such investments promote stability and trust in Azerbaijan. The construction of the biggest project on the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan main export oil pipeline is complete in Azerbaijan. However, it is one of the next stages in the development of oil and gas sector in Azerbaijan, President underlined.

In case the world oil prices comprise $50 per barrel Azerbaijans revenues from the development of oil and gas projects will comprise $140bn over the subsequent 20 years.

Perhaps, some changes will be injected soon in the project on Shah Deniz gas condensate development. It is explained with the considerable increase of demand in gas not only in Azerbaijan, but also throughout the world, he stressed.

In his letter to the participants of the Caspian Oil and Gas 2006 exhibition and conference 2006 US President George W. Bush noted the important role of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and South Caucasus Pipeline (SCP) gas main in the energy security. With sustained leadership by Azerbaijan, we anticipate continued achievements on energy security in the immediate future. We look forward to cooperation among governments and private companies to accelerate natural gas production in Azerbaijan to satisfy Azerbaijans domestic needs, help Georgia and the rest of Europe diversify their gas supplies, and clear the way for possible gas shipments from Central Asia to Europe. We also hope to see Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan agree on terms to ship oil produced in Kazakhstan via the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline, the letter read.

Turkey also voiced its hope that the Azerbaijani gas will be transported to Europe via the South Caucasus Pipeline (SCP). Turkey will try to do all possible for the Azerbaijani gas to Greece and onwards to Europe and take every effort for fuel delivery to Romanian and Bulgaria. .

Turkey could be an energy bridge of these oil and gas projects. Oil from the Ceyhan terminal will be exported to different countries, in particular, to Israel and India..

Investments by the Turkish company TPAO in the Azerbaijani projects will be increased from the current $2.2bn to $4bn, he assured.

Kazakhstan voiced its hope for joining to the BTC. Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan are near to signing an intergovernmental agreement on joint oil transportation via the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) main export oil pipeline. The agreement will be signed shortly.

Astana and Baku were also seriously considering gas deliveries via Azerbaijan. The current level of the Azerbaijan-Kazakhstan bilateral relationships enable to carry out this project.

Israel is also seriously considering the issue on continuation of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) main export oil pipeline via its territory.

The territory of Israel is located in 60k of the Turkish port of Ceyhan, which makes possible the use of the Israeli pipeline arteries for the oil delivery from the Caspian to the Near East markets

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