Trend: South Stream project implementation not to affect Caspian gas supplies to Europe

The implementation of Russian South Stream project will not affect the future Caspian gas supplies to Europe, European energy expert Neil Melvin believes.

Russian Gazprom's Management Committee chairman Alexey Miller approved the South Stream Construction Charter this week.

The South Stream project is implemented to diversify the routes of natural gas supplies to the European consumers and envisages the construction of a gas pipeline across the Black Sea to South and Central Europe.

In December 2011 Russia and Turkey reached an agreement on granting a final construction permit for the South Stream pipeline.

"My own view is that the South Stream project is primarily a project designed for pressure in terms of Russian negotiation position," European Energy Agency member and Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) expert Melvin told Trend over the telephone from Sweden.

"First of all, it is designed for pressure on Ukraine to try to gain Gazprom's better access for the Ukrainian gas transit system and favorable gas contracts."

Secondly, it is something of a spoiler to the Nabucco project, he added.

Nabucco gas pipeline, which is one of the projects within the Southern Gas Corridor, is designed to transport gas from the Caspian region and Middle East to Europe. According to the overall conception of Nabucco project, the pipeline will be laid from the Georgian-Turkish and Iraqi-Turkish borders to the Austrian Baumgarten.

But, the expert believes that actually the South Stream will not affect future gas supplies from the Caspian region. In addition, the success of the project is rather doubtful.  MORE

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