SOCAR President: Europe the Main Market for Azeri Gas

President of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR), Rovnag Abdullayev has said that Europe remains the biggest market for Azeri gas supply.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Mr. Abdullayev said that the choice of pipelines ensured that Europe provided a lot of options for Azeri gas.

"There are many opportunities for Azerbaijani gas supplies to Europe," the Trend news agency reports him as saying. "They include such projects as Nabucco, ITGI, TAP and TANAP."

At present, three pipeline consortiums, ITGI, Nabucco and TAP are vying for the opportunity to bring gas from Azerbaijan to the rest of Europe. Yesterday, BP Shah Deniz Development marketing manager Steve Garlick said that a decision on the transit route for Shah Deniz gas could be expected in the first quarter if this year. The consortiums are in competition to carry gas from the massive Shah Deniz gas field in Azerbaijan, which has estimated reserves of 15 trillion cubic feet of gas, to Europe.

Mr. Abdullayev also told the conference that SOCAR remained the most major gas company, not just in its own country but in the entire region. He said work and development was continuing on the major gas fields located in Azerbaijan Republic.

SOCAR is one of seven stakeholders in the Shah Deniz II project. BP is the operator in the project with a 25.5 per cent stake. Statoil also holds a 25.5 per cent stake. Lukoil, NICO and Total each hold a 10 per cent stake, while Turkish company TPAO holds the remaining 9 per cent stake.

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