Saturday, June 03, 2006
Turkey-Greece pipeline to transmit Azeri gas by end of year
26 May 2006 [12:50] - Today.Az - Turkey-Greece natural gas pipeline transmitting Azeri natural gas would be in operation by the end of 2006, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Hilmi Guler said on Thursday. "At the end of the year, Turkey will send Azeri natural gas to Greece," G?ler told a gathering of Turkish investors, adding that from there it would eventually go to Italy. "We are enriching Europe," he said. The construction of the pipeline started last July in a ceremony held at the middle of the bridge over Meric River, the natural frontier between Greece and Turkey. Stretching over 300 kilometres, 209 kilometres of which is on Turkish territory, the pipeline will transport gas from Azerbaijan and other Caucasus producers to European countries. Starting with a capacity of 3.5 billion cubic meters per year, the pipeline will eventually be able to handle an annual 11.5 billion cubic meters. The cost for the Greek part has been estimated at between 30 and 40 million euros, and for the Turkish part at 250 million euros. Turkey aims to become a regional energy hub between Europe and the natural gas and oil producers of the Caspian Sea and the Middle East. Another major project, the Baku-Tblisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline, which will carry Azeri oil through Georgia to the Turkish Mediterranean port of Ceyhan and from there to world markets, is expected to be officially inaugurated in July.