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16.08.2013 10:42

European Commission to continue working with Azerbaijan to increase supplies through Southern Gas Corridor

The European Commission will continue to work with Azerbaijan and the countries concerned to increase the volumes supplied through the Southern Gas Corridor, opening the possibility of a second pipeline through Central Europe to Austria, Maja Kocijancic, spokesperson to High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice President of the Commission Catherine Ashton told Trend in an interview.

"Azerbaijan has been called a 'door-opener' in this process," Kocijancic said. "But there are further potential sources in the Southern Gas Corridor linking the EU to Turkey, the Eastern Mediterranean, Iraq and other countries."

Kocijancic stressed that the EU welcomes the decision to build the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) as an important step towards the completion of the Southern Gas Corridor, bringing significant diversification of gas supplies to Europe and improving Europe's energy security.

According to Kocijancic, the Commission is also working closely with member states to improve the interconnections of the markets in Central Europe.

"With the necessary infrastructure and reverse flows of an Internal EU Energy Market in place, once the gas enters the EU, it can be transported anywhere in Europe" Kocijancic said.

A consortium of Azerbaijani Shah Deniz gas condensate field development announced its choice of the TAP project in late June, as a gas transportation route to the European markets.

Nabucco West was the second pipeline, which competed for the transportation of Azerbaijani gas to Europe.

TAP is designed to transport gas from the Caspian region via Greece and Albania and across the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy and then to Western Europe. The gas which will be produced in the second phase of Shah Deniz field, is considered as the main source of the project.

The initial capacity of the TAP pipeline will be 10 billion cubic meters per year with the possibility of expanding to 20 billion cubic meters per year.

TAP shareholders are BP (20 percent), SOCAR (20 percent), Statoil (20 percent), Fluxys (16 percent), Total (10 percent), E.ON (9 percent) and Axpo (5 percent).

The construction of TAP is expected to start in 2015.

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