Azerbaijani President: "The Southern Gas Corridor is a main element of the strategy that helps us to diversify our economy" - UPDATED

# 18:58
15 February 2018

The Southern Gas Corridor project is one of the key elements of Azerbaijan's energy strategy, which is very successful and is helping Azerbaijan to diversify its economy, Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev said  at the Fourth Ministerial Meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council in Baku, APA reports.


The head of state noted that the government invests in the non-oil sector, human capital and infrastructure, using energy resources and thus provides long-term sustainable development of the economy. "Undoubtedly, the projects that we have implemented in Azerbaijan in the previous years have created a solid foundation for the realization of the Southern Gas Corridor. Our energy strategy started shortly after our independence, and in 1994, Azerbaijan signed a contract with the world's leading oil companies consortium led by BP, and taking into consideration the volume of the project and investment, the contract was immediately named as the "Contract of the Century". After our last meeting in February last year in Baku, we signed a new agreement to extend the "Contract of the Century" on the same bed. At present, the project is extended to 2050. In the upcoming decades, we will benefit from sustainable and sustainable development at one of the world's largest oil fields, Azeri-Chiraq-Guneshli. "


President Ilham Aliyev noted that 1994 was actually a turning point in our history, history of oil development in Azerbaijan and around the world. "It also introduced Azerbaijan to the world community, opened a door to the huge investment in the economy, especially the oil and gas sector and has demonstrated that Azerbaijan is a reliable partner and is unable to create the most favorable investment climate for investors. I just want to remind that all our major oil and gas contracts are ratified by our parliament and signed as a law.This gives investors maximum investment. Two years later, in 1996, the Shah Deniz gas condensate project was signed and Shah Deniz is the sole source for the Southern Gas Corridor. This has been an important event in our history, as it has helped us to attract billions of dollars in investments, and Azerbaijan has become a country producing and exporting gas from the oil producing and exporting country. Today, these two major energy projects play an important role in regional cooperation issues. This has encouraged the construction of the main pipeline infrastructure connecting regions and continents.Today, these two mega projects help diversify power supplies in the region and Europe. Since we did not have access to international markets as a country that has no access to the sea, we have to build pipelines and we need regional cooperation now. I think that's a good demonstration of our plans. Thus, the first pipeline connecting Baku and Georgia's Supsa seaport opened at the end of the 1990s and established the first connection between the Caspian Sea and the Black Sea with the crude oil pipeline. However, this was not enough, because the capacity of this pipeline was not sufficient for the full development of our oil reserves.Therefore, the construction of the main oil pipeline was planned and the successful launch of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline connecting the Caspian and the Mediterranean in 2006. At present, the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline transmits Azerbaijan to a transit country and transit partner, not only from Azerbaijan, but also from oil fields on the other side of the Caspian Sea - on the eastern shores of the Caspian Sea. "


The head of state noted that 2007 was also an important year in the history of the country: "For the first time Azerbaijan became a gas exporter. After the opening of the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum gas pipeline, our gas began to be exported to the Georgian and Turkish markets, and it also laid the foundation for the second phase of the development of the Shah Deniz field and the Southern Gas Corridor. We are discussing ways to create new opportunities for a new stage in the Shah Deniz field development. Of course, we needed a pipeline with a diameter larger to export our gas to Turkey and Europe, and in 2012, Azerbaijan and Turkey signed a historic document on the construction of the Trans-Anatolian-TANAP pipeline in Istanbul. I think that this date will have a strong impact on economic benefits for our countries, regional development and cooperation. This was a turning point in modern history. TANAP is one of the fundamental elements of the Southern Gas Corridor, and in fact, in 2012, Shah Deniz-2 opened a major investment. After that, a decision was made to invest in Shah Deniz-2 in 2013. Without TANAP it would not have been possible. 2013 was the year when the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline was selected as a continuation of the TANAP project. Thus, this is a short history of the work done. Of course, this history shows that we are moving towards the implementation of the Southern Gas Corridor for more than 20 years. These 20 years are the year of success, achievements, development, transformation and regional cooperation. "