Trans Adriatic Pipeline Manager; Good chances to win Shah Deniz bid

Trans Adriatic Pipeline Manager; Good chances to win Shah Deniz bid

Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) has very good chances to be the winner in Shah Deniz consortium`s route selection process, TAP Managing Director Kjetil Tungland said in an interview with Trend news agency in Baku.

“I am confident that TAP will be selected as the final route to transport Azerbaijani gas to Europe,“ Tungland said.

According to him, TAP has several advantages over the other proposed pipeline projects – the benefits of which have already contributed to the selection of TAP as the route to transport Azerbaijani gas to Italy.

Among these advantages Tungland stressed the financial solidity of the project`s shareholders, which are Switzerland`s EGL, Norway`s Statoil and Germany`s E.ON Ruhrgas, as well as world leading engineering competencies in constructing onshore and offshore pipelines.

“The second important element is that TAP has the capability to scale up its capacity from 10 bcm to 20 bcm. This element became even more important after the discovery of new gas reserves in Azerbaijan last year,“ Tungland said.

The fact that the pipeline will cross Albania where it can be easily linked to other projects in South East Europe and Balkans is another attraction of TAP, Tungland said.

TAP is one of the Southern Gas Corridor pipeline projects which has been designed to transport gas from the Caspian region via Greece and Albania and across the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy and further into Western Europe. Gas to be produced during the second stage of the Azerbaijani Shah Deniz gas condensate field development is considered as the main source for TAP.

Earlier this month, the Shah Deniz consortium excluded another project, ITGI (Interconnector Turkey-Greece-Italy), from the list of those being considered to export Azerbaijani gas to European markets, and announced TAP as its chosen route for export of Azerbaijani gas to Italy.

The Shah Deniz consortium is also considering other possible export routes – Nabucco and South East Europe Pipeline (SEEP), which circumvent Greece and Italy and travel further north into the Balkans.

Tungland said that these projects are serious rivals to TAP, however their target markets are not so large and as solid as the Italian market.

Some experts believe that TAP focusing on the Italian market makes it a non-strategic project due to the fact that the country is well supplied and there is no sufficient demand for gas there.

Tungland noted that Italy could be in fact used as a hub, since the country is well interconnected with the rest of Europe.

“So, supplying Italy with gas actually means supplying Europe with gas as well,“ he added.


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