A Trans-Caspian gas project that would deliver natural gas from Turkmenistan to Turkey via the territories of Georgia and Azerbaijan will never be implemented according to a statement made by President of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Natik Aliyev and which was circulated at the OPEC general secretariat in Vienna on Tuesday. According to Aliyev, following the opening of the Shah Deniz deposit in mid-1999, deliveries of Azeri gas to western markets had become a pressing issue. Accordingly, Aliyev stressed that Baku had demanded that it be given an export quota of half the Trans-Caspian pipeline's capacity. However, Aliyev reported that the leadership of Turkmenistan believed that this would not be in their interests. The project, therefore, will not be implemented. The Trans-Caspian pipeline would theoretically be 1,700 km long and would stretch from Turkmenistan to Turkey along the depths of the Caspian Sea and across the territories of Azerbaijan and Georgia. Turkmenistan and Turkey signed an inter-governmental agreement in May 1999 on the former state delivering 16 billion cubic meters of gas per year to Turkey, starting from 2002. Azerbaijan and Turkey ratified an agreement on supplies from the Shah Deniz deposit in May this year. The document envisages that Turkey will receive 89.2 billion cubic meters of gas.
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