Baku. 30 July. REPORT.AZ/ Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on July 29 there was a risk construction of an underwater pipeline to Turkey could be delayed if a related intergovernmental agreement was not signed soon, Report informs referring to Turkish mass media.
Russia’s Gazprom is yet to start laying pipes beneath the Black Sea for the first line of the Turkish Stream pipeline, which was expected to start operations by 2017 and bring 15.75 billion cubic meters (bcm) to Turkey annually.
“If construction does not start, it is obvious that the schedule is moving,” Novak said
Turkish Stream is supposed to bring a total of 63 billion cubic meters of gas per year to Turkey and to southern Europe via Greece by 2020, a project aimed at bypassing Ukraine as a key transit country for Russian gas flowing to Europe.
Earlier in July, Gazprom cancelled a contract with Italy’s Saipem to build a link to Turkey but Russian officials have said Moscow was continuing to work on the project.
On July 28, a Russian Energy Ministry official said Moscow had offered to sign an intergovernmental agreement on the first line only and Ankara was yet to reply.
Turkey wanted a bigger gas discount before agreeing to sign an intergovernmental deal.