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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 16-05-17

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] TAP will create new conditions for Europe's energy security, foreign dignitaries say

  • [01] TAP will create new conditions for Europe's energy security, foreign dignitaries say

    The construction of the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) will create a new landscape in Europe's energy security and the political stability and peace in the wider region and, by opening the so-called "Southern Gas Corridor", will bring natural gas to Europe's energy markets from the huge natural gas field at Shah Deniz in the Caspian Sea, starting from 2020, according to representatives from nine countries participating in the ceremony inaugurating construction of the pipeline on Tuesday.

    During the ceremony, Greek and foreign officials discussed how the interconnecting pipelines that will link with TAP and TANAP (Trans-Anatolian Pipeline) in the following years - such as the IGB (Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria) in Bulgaria and the Ionian Adriatic Pipeline (IAP) - will extend further the dynamic of the energy networks, unlocking new power resources for Europe.

    Speaking at the event, Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili noted that by 2019 the quantities of transferred natural gas exported by the wider region will increase significantly. "TAP will facilitate the connection of the [energy] system with other regions, ensuring an opening to new markets … The Southern Gas Corridor may also extend to reach other countries, from where gas could come to Europe, like Turkmenistan," he said.

    The First Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan, Yaqub Eyyubov, said the Southern Gas Corridor will support the desire of European states to diversify their sources of supply.

    "The Southern Gas Corridor constitutes a new energy example and opportunity, which may facilitate the provision of larger amounts of gas not only from Azerbaijan, but also Central Asia and Eastern Mediterranean," he said, adding that TAP doesn't compete with existing pipelines, but simply constitutes an alternative.

    Taking his turn, Albanian Deputy Prime Minister Niko Peleshi said the construction of the Albanian section of the pipeline is expected to start in the second half of 2016, adding that TAP is very important for Europe's future because it offers reliable energy in good prices, which is one of the biggest challenges in the EU at the moment.

    The Vice-President of the European Commission for Energy Union, Maros Sefcovic, described the inauguration as a "historic day", noting that the Southern Gas Corridor is "the biggest construction project of our time."

    "The realisation of the Southern Gas Corridor will be a turning point from centralised markets with single dominant suppliers to mixed and diverse energy markets; from a world where each country had its own energy plans into a coherent regional strategy where countries cooperate together along common interests; from the assumption that the Caspian Sea is too far away for the European market to creating an integrated energy infrastructure linking Caspian resources to European consumers," he said.

    "Today's ceremony is the living proof that this is technically possible, that it's economically viable, and that it's politically beneficial for all parties involved."

    Sefcovic also explained that energy diversification is not a matter of symbolism; it is about competitiveness which will create better services and lower prices.

    "By 2020 we expect to see gas flowing into Europe. This will be the conclusion but not the end. Once the route and the overall framework are tested, it will be easier to expand the Southern Gas Corridor beyond the initial volumes of 10 billion cubic meters a year," he added.

    The Commissioner also confirmed the EU's interest in scaling-up the Southern Gas Corridor swiftly, including with more gas originating from the Caspian and possibly Central Asia region. "In this context, it is important to recall the Ashgabat Declaration signed with Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey in May last year," he said.

    On his side, U.S. Special Envoy for Energy Affairs Amos Hochstein said the construction of the pipeline will bring new hope for stability to all the countries along the TAP route and the wider region. "The completion of the Southern Gas Corridor must continue to be a major priority for Europe's energy security," he said at the ceremony and added that the IGB will also impact the region. "Gas will reach many regions in Europe which until now had serious problems with conditions of monopoly," he said.

    Turkish Energy Minister, Berat Albayrak, said that more gas will be available through the TAP and TANAP and a more reliable supply for more markets adding that through these pipelines "we witnessed how cooperation can overcome concerns on Europe's energy supply."

    Italy's "very active interest" for the construction of TAP was noted by the country's Minister of Economic Development, Carlo Calenda. "The final permits for the creation of the project have been issued ... For the first time, the Italian government adopted a new law, which enables us to achieve our results on schedule ... Thanks to investments already made, the Italian network will ensure by 2018 reverse flow along the pipeline in quantities of up to 30 bcm.


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