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WB ready to consider support to additional investments for Southern Gas Corridor (Exclusive)

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Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept.16

By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:

The World Bank (WB) stands ready to consider support to additional investments required to enable the transportation of additional volumes of natural gas that would contribute to Azerbaijan’s increased revenues from this investment, Sebastian Molineus, World Bank Regional Director for the South Caucasus, said in an exclusive interview with Trend.

He was answering the question whether the WB is ready to further allocate loans for the expansion of the Southern Gas Corridor, which envisages transportation of Azerbaijani gas to Europe.

“We are delighted to be part of the Southern Gas Corridor project which will have a significant impact by increasing Azerbaijan’s revenues over the coming decades, and contribute to energy security in South-East Europe. I am particularly delighted that we have been able to mobilize other international lenders who have joined this project,” said Molineus.

He pointed out that the construction of the pipeline is now nearly finalized and gas is being delivered to Turkey, with deliveries to Europe expected to commence in the coming months.

“As the SGC envisages a potential expansion of gas supplies from 16 bcm to 25 bcm and ultimately to 31 bcm, based on additional volumes of natural gas that may be contracted in the future the World Banks stands ready to consider support to additional investments required to enable the transportation of additional volumes of natural gas that would contribute to Azerbaijan’s increased revenues from this investment,” noted the WB regional director.

The World Bank Board of Directors approved $800 million for this project on Dec.20, 2016. Of this amount, $400 million was considered for the Southern Gas Corridor CJSC (Azerbaijan) and $400 million for BOTAS (Turkey).

The Southern Gas Corridor is one of the priority projects for the EU and envisages the transportation of 10 billion cubic meters of Azerbaijani gas from the Caspian region through Georgia and Turkey to Europe.

The launching ceremony of the first stage of the Southern Gas Corridor was held in Baku on May 29, 2018, while opening ceremony of TANAP was held on June 12, 2018 in the Turkish city of Eskisehir.

The gas from the Azerbaijani Shah Deniz field has already gone through the first segment of the Southern Gas Corridor - from the Sangachal terminal to the expanded South Caucasus Pipeline.

Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) and Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) were connected on the Turkish-Greek border.

The official opening ceremony of the BTK railway was held in Baku Oct. 30, 2017. The BTK railway was constructed on the basis a Georgian-Azerbaijani-Turkish intergovernmental agreement.

The railway’s peak capacity will be 17 million tons of cargo per year. At an initial stage, this figure will be one million passengers and 6.5 million tons of cargo.

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