Italian president tells Azerbaijan Rome is committed to unfinished TAP pipeline

Italian president tells Azerbaijan Rome is committed to unfinished TAP pipeline
By bne IntelliNews July 19, 2018

Italian President Sergio Mattarella on July 18 said during a visit to Azerbaijan that Italy is committed to the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP).

Italy is at the end of the planned Southern Gas Corridor (SGC), which is to deliver gas to Western Europe from Azerbaijan’s giant Shah Deniz 2 gas field in the Caspian Sea, which cost $28bn to develop. Pipelines that will transport the gas across Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey are already complete but TAP is not and there have been fears that the new government in Rome is doubtful as to whether the project should be finished.

An Italian government source reportedly told Reuters that while it was now committing to the pipeline, it may seek to shift its path to limit its environmental impact. Activists have protested that the arrival of the pipeline will lead to the destruction of olive groves in Southern Italy.

"I think they will move [the pipeline] to avoid the olive trees," the source, who has knowledge of the dossier, was quoted as saying.

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