October 1, 2015 - BP Azerbaijan commented its possible withdrawal from TAP: commitment to Southern Gas Corridor keeps

Baku, Fineko/abc.az. BP Azerbaijan has commented on the possible withdrawal from gas pipeline project TAP designed to supply Azerbaijani gas to the EU.

BP Azerbaijan’s public relations manager Tamam Bayatly says BP remains committed to the regional projects including Southern Gas Corridor (SGC).

’We believe it is an important project to supply gas to Europe from the Caspian. This huge project is making very good progress in all parts across the entire gas value chain and is on track for the first gas to  Turkey in 2018 and to Europe in 2020,’ Bayatly said.

Yesterday, within the framework of the XV Italian Energy Summit Carlo Malacarne, one of the Snam’s executives, stated to the media that "it seems that BP, as well as Norway’s Statoil, wants to sell its stake (the same 20% as Statoil has) in TAP project, and both these companies are not far from completion of the relevant deals".

"Statoil is most likely to announce officially about the sale of 20% by the end of 2015. We certainly are interested in participation in TAP, although we have not yet entered the phase of detailed negotiations," Mr. Malacarne said.

He reminded that the Memorandum of Understanding was signed in Baku last week with the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) "on the joint assessment of initiatives aimed at developing the Southern Gas Corridor".

Mr. Malacarne did not rule out that Malaysia’s Petronas, which in 2014 bought a stake from Statoil in Azerbaijani gas field Shah Deniz, can enter in TAP.

"Snam sees itself as a strategic partner of SOCAR in the development of gas infrastructure, and our contribution could be even greater than from other companies," Mr. Malacarne stated.

Currently the TAP participants are as follows: SOCAR (20%), BP (20%), Statoil (20%), Belgium’s Fluxys (a partner of Snam in other projects) (19%), Spain’s ENAGAS (16%) and Switzerland’s Axpo (5%).