There is no Plan B for the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) project that envisages transportation of Azerbaijani gas to Europe, said Deputy Vice-President of Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR for investments and marketing Vitaliy Baylarbayov.
He made the remarks during the Atlantic Council webcast briefing from Washington, S&P Global Platts reported.
Baylarbayov and Emily Olson, BP vice president responsible for external affairs for the Southern Gas Corridor, expressed confidence that Italy will see TAP to be completed on time.
"There is no Plan B. And there should not be any Plan B. Italy needs this gas. Gas demand in Italy is growing and volumes of imports are growing," noted Baylarbayov asked whether there is a back-up plan if Rome vetoes TAP's landfall in Italy.
TAP project, worth 4.5 billion euros, is one of the priority energy projects for the European Union (EU), and has already attracted 1.5 billion euros from the European Investment Bank (EIB), which approved the loan in early February 2018.
Connecting with the Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) at the Greek-Turkish border, TAP will cross Northern Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea before coming ashore in Southern Italy to connect to the Italian natural gas network.
The project is currently in its construction phase, which started in 2016.
Once built, TAP will offer a direct and cost-effective transportation route opening up the vital Southern Gas Corridor, a 3,500-kilometer long gas value chain stretching from the Caspian Sea to Europe.
TAP shareholders include BP (20 percent), SOCAR (20 percent), Snam S.p.A. (20 percent), Fluxys (19 percent), Enagas (16 percent) and Axpo (5 percent).