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“We will back the South Corridor project that will allow Europe to tap into Central Asia’s vast reserves,” he said on Wednesday.
The Southern Corridor project is an initiative of the European Commission for the gas supply from Caspian and Middle Eastern regions to Europe.
The project directly opposes Russia’s South Stream that is designed to supply Russian gas to the EU by-passing Ukraine. The South Stream project is much more beneficial, but it frightens radical supporters of the EU energy independence.
The Southern Gas Corridor envisions the construction of gas pipelines between the Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline (TANAP) via Turkey and the Trans-Adriatic gas pipeline (TAP) to Italy via Albania and Greece and the expansion of the South Caucasian Pipeline. It is expected to supply six billion cubic metres of gas to Turkey and 10 billion cubic metres of gas to Europe.
South Stream is a strategic project for Europe's energy security and should be implemented by the end of 2015. Work is currently underway to draft a feasibility study for the marine section across the Black Sea and the surface section running through transit countries.
The overall capacity of the marine section of the pipeline will be 63 billion cubic metres per year. Its cost is about 8.6 billion euro.