EU approves Greece-TAP gas pipeline deal

The EU Commission approved a deal between Greece and the Trans Atlantic Pipeline (TAP) with will bring Azerbaijan gas to Europe
EU approves Greece-TAP gas pipeline deal
03 March 17:28 2016 Print This Article

The European Commission has approved on Thursday a deal between Greece and Trans Adriatic Pipeline on construction of a pipeline which will bring gas from Azerbaijan to Europe, reports Reuters with reference to the Commission’s press release.

The 870-km (540-mile) pipeline will link Azerbaijan’s giant Shah Deniz II field with Italy, crossing through Georgia, Turkey, Greece and Albania.

“Today’s decision opens the way for a multi-billion infrastructure project in Greece. The Trans Adriatic Pipeline will bring new gas to the EU and increase the security of energy supply for Southeast Europe,” Margerethe Vestager, Commissioner in charge of competition policy said in the statement.

It is also said in the press release that the investment incentives offered by the Greek Government will be in compliance with the EU state aid rules. As part of the Greek deal, TAP will be granted a specific tax regime for 25 years.

The Trans Adriatic Pipeline is part of the European’s bigger project of the Southern Gas Corridor, which aims to connect the EU market to new gas sources. Initially, it will have a capacity of 10 billion cubic meters of gas per year. The EU hopes that Azerbaijan gas will reduce dependence of southern Europe from current suppliers, mainly Russian giant Gazprom. According to Rbc.ru, in 2015, Italy was the third largest purchaser of Russian gas (24,42 billion cubic meters of gas) after Turkey (27,01 billion cubic meters) and Germany (45,31 billion cubic meters).

TAP is owned by British BP (20%), Azerbaijan state energy firm SOCAR (20%), Italian Snam (20%), Belgian Fluxys (19%), Spanish Enagas (16%) and Swiss Axpo (5%).

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