President Ilham Aliyev, of Azerbaijan, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan inaugurated the Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (Tanap) on 12 June.
The US$7.9 billion Tanap project will transport gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz field to Turkey’s western borders. Gas will be delivered to Turkey this year and, after completion of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline, on to Europe by early 2020. Tanap will be 1,850km long, with an initial capacity of 16 billion cubic metres, of which around 6 bcm will be for the Turkish domestic market. Tanap’s current shareholders are the Southern Gas Corridor CJSC (58%), Botas (30%) and BP (12%).
Turkey’s ambassador to Turkmenistan Mustafa Kapucu said that ‘Turkey hopes for Ashgabat’s participation in the Tanap project as Turkmenistan plays a key role in the energy industry of the region’. He noted that all the interested parties were looking forward to the signing of the Caspian Convention and the determination of the status of the Caspian Sea. A sub-sea pipeline from Turkmenistan to Azerbaijan, supplying Turkmen gas to Europe via Tanap, would increase the profitability of the project, the ambassador added.
In May 2015, the energy ministers of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Turkmenistan and European Commission vice president for energy issues Maroš Šefcovic signed the Ashgabat declaration on energy. The project to build a 300km sub-sea gas pipeline to Azerbaijan, as previously noted by the interested parties, is optimal for the delivery of Turkmen resources to the European market.
The construction of another important part of the Southern Gas Corridor, the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), is 59% complete. An official consortium statement says that ‘between Greece and Albania, more than 450km have been built, or around 59% of our route (765km in total)’.
The Southern Gas Corridor is one of the EU’s priority energy projects. It will transport gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz Stage 2 project to the EU. The pipeline will link up with Tanap on the Turkish-Greek border, run through Greece, Albania and under the Adriatic Sea, coming ashore in southern Italy. The 878km pipeline consists of sections in Greece (550km), Albania (215km), the Adriatic (105km), and Italy (8km). TAP’s shareholders are BP (20%), Socar (20%), Snam (20%), Fluxys (19%), Enagás (16%) and Axpo (5%).