Turkey opens tap on Azeri gas imports

By bne IntelliNews January 16, 2013

bne -

The Turkish energy market regulator has issued a licence to the local unit of Azeri state-owned energy company Socar to sell its gas on the wholesale market. The move opens the way for Socar to start importing gas into the energy hungry country ahead of the construction of the TANAP pipeline.

Socar Turkey Enerji is now licensed to sell gas wholesale on the Turkish market for 30 years, news.az reports. The report also points out that Socar has also recently set itself up to distribute gas to Turkish consumers with the establishment in November by Socar and Turkish gas company Cig Enerji of Socar Gaz Ticaret.

Kenan Yavuz, head of SOCAR Turkey Enerji, said last year that the company plans to import 1.2bn cubic metros of gas from Azerbaijan beginning from 1 January 2013. Socar Gaz Ticaret says it plans to sell 700-800m cubic meters of Azeri gas to Turkish consumers per year.

The licencing of Socar Turkey Enerji to import gas into Turkey comes ahead of the start of construction of the TANAP pipeline, which will carry Azeri gas to Turkey's border with Bulgaria, from where it will be shipped to an EU hub in Austria. Turkey will take 6bn cubic metres of gas for itself from the pipeline.

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