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Albanian government to renegotiate terms on TAP gas pipeline project

Construction and rehabilitation of 100 km of roads and 43 bridges to be concluded by the end of 2016 with investments exceeding €60mln.

Baku. 19 April. REPORT.AZ/ The Albanian government said on April 18 it has started talks with the aim of renegotiating the agreement on the Trans Atlantic Pipeline (TAP) project to secure similar benefits to those enjoyed by the other countries involved in the project, Report informs citing the "BNE IntelliNews".

The TAP project has become one of the main engines of the country’s economic and social development in Albania. The project’s importance to the economy is already evident, just a few months after the construction of access roads and bridges for the project started. TAP will promote economic development and job creation along the pipeline route and will be a major source of foreign direct investment that it does not depend on grants or subsidies.

He did not specify exactly what benefits Tirana hopes to secure.

TAP is part of the Southern Gas Corridor, which stretches over 3,500 km from Azerbaijan’s giant offshore Shah Deniz II gas field fields to Italy.

The 878 km long pipeline will connect with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) at the Turkish-Greek border at Kipoi, passing through Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before arriving on the shores of southern Italy. Within Albania, the pipeline covers 215 km onshore and 37 km offshore from the border with Greece to the Adriatic coast near Fier.

It is expected that the construction and rehabilitation of 100 km of roads and 43 bridges to be concluded by the end of 2016 with investments in this part of the project exceeding €60mn.

Meanwhile, stevedoring, logistics and shipping experts from several companies within Germany's EMS-Fehn-Group have started their work on the TAP project, the company said on April 18.

A total of 13 shipments of line pipes between 12 and 15 metres long with a diameter of 1.20 metres are planned, the company added. 

TAP's groundbreaking ceremony will take place in late May in Greek city of Thessaloniki. TAP is a part of the Southern Gas Corridor project jointly with the South Caucasus Pipeline (SCP) and the Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline (TANAP).

TAP will connect with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) at the Turkish-Greek border at Kipoi, cross Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in Southern Italy. The project provides multiple opportunities for further transport of Caspian natural gas to some of the largest European markets such as Germany, France, the UK, Switzerland and Austria.

TAP is designed for transportation of natural gas of Shahdeniz 2 to Western Europe through Greece and Albania. Annual capacity is 10 bcm of gas. However, it's possible to increase the capacity to 20 bcm. This pipeline will start to transport Azerbaijani gas in 2019.

TAP shareholders are: BP – 20%, SOCAR – 20%, Snam S.p.A.– 20%, Fluxys – 19%, Enagas – 16% and EGL-Axpo – 5%.

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