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BAKU, September 9 (Itar-Tass) —— The exploration of a new gas field of Absheron in Azerbaijan is an important event for the country’s live, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said during Friday’s meeting with Mike Borelli, Vice President of France’s Total company, which is the operator of the Absheron project on the Caspian Sea self.
“Opening of the new field proves that Azerbaijani gas potential is much bigger than the earlier-stated proven reserves,” Aliyev said. He is confident that this event will strengthen much more the country’s position on the global gas market.
“Azerbaijan will continue an expedient policy for the development of the oil and gas sector,” the president said.
Aliyev pointed to the Total contribution in the exploration of the Absheron field, stressing that the French company successfully works in Azerbaijan many years.
Borelli, in turn, pointed to the close contact of the French company with the State Oil Company of Azerbaijani Republic (SOCAR) in the exploration of the new gas field. “We achieved the success together,” he said.
Aliyev congratulated the Azerbaijani population on the exploration of the new gas field. In his opinion, “the new field will allow Azerbaijan to enhance its positions both in the region and in the world in general, as well as will intensify the country’s social and economic development and improve living standards.”
According to preliminary estimates, the reserves of the new field are estimated at 300 billion cubic metres.
Late in February 2009, the State Oil Company of Azerbaijani Republic (SOCAR) signed an agreement with Total on geological surveys and development of the Absheron block at the Caspian Sea shelf.
Under the contract, a 60-percent stake belonged to Total, and a 40-percent stake – to SOCAR. At the same time, later another French utility GDF Suez purchased 20 percent from Total’s stake in the project. Therefore, now Total and SOCAR hold equal stakes in the project.