Southern Gas Corridor to strengthen economic, political and geostrategic co-op – Trend

The Southern Gas Corridor, which will supply Caspian gas to Europe via Turkey, will turn Azerbaijan and Turkey into a strategic energy corridor, Murat Akan, international trade operation specialist in Turkey, told Trend.

“Natural gas has entered its golden age, because it has gained geopolitical importance and has become a constant element of international policies. The states possessing energy deposits and energy corridors have the most say in the global politics of the 21st century.

The natural gas demand is increasing day by day, especially in Europe.

“The Southern Gas Corridor will strengthen regional stability. The Corridor, which will run through Azerbaijan, Turkey, Greece, Italy and reach the rest of Europe will strengthen the economic, political and geostrategic cooperation.

“This is the first project to transport gas from the Caspian Sea region to Europe. Southern Gas Corridor will provide energy security for Europe, and guarantee demand for Azerbaijani gas.

“It is the only project designed to provide energy diversity in Europe. This historic project will further strengthen the strategic position of Azerbaijan and Turkey in Europe.

“The start of commercial gas flow to Europe via the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), the final leg of the Southern Gas Corridor, is the greatest achievement of Azerbaijan and Turkey.

“This historical project will lead to further development of commercial and cultural cooperation between the two countries,” he said.

Following the start of commercial operations on November 15, 2020, the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) AG confirmed on Dec. 31 the commencement of gas flows from Azerbaijan. The first gas has reached Greece and Bulgaria, via the Nea Mesimvria interconnection point with DESFA, as well as Italy, via the Melendugno interconnection point with SNAM Rete Gas (SRG).

TAP transports natural gas from the giant Shah Deniz field in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea to Europe. The 878 km long pipeline connects with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) at the Turkish-Greek border in Kipoi, crosses Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in Southern Italy.

TAP will facilitate gas supplies to South Eastern European countries through prospective interconnectors. In particular, Bulgaria will be able to cover up to 33% of its total gas demand through TAP after the completion of the Interconnector Greece Bulgaria (IGB). TAP’s exits in Greece and Albania together with the landfall in Italy provide multiple opportunities for further transport of gas from Azerbaijan to the wider European markets.

As a key part of the Southern Gas Corridor, TAP is strategically and economically important to Europe and essential in providing reliable access to a new source of natural gas. TAP plays a significant role in boosting Europe’s energy security, supply diversification, as well as decarbonisation objectives.

TAP’s shareholding is comprised of bp (20%), SOCAR (20%), Snam (20%), Fluxys (19%), Enagás (16%) and Axpo (5%).

Source: Southern Gas Corridor to strengthen economic, political and geostrategic co-op