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MOSCOW, January 20. /TASS/. The launch of the Turkish Stream natural gas pipeline will substantially mitigate transit risks for Russia’s gas transit via the territory of its neighbors, but will not fully solve the issue of gas transit through Ukraine, Russia’s Deputy Energy Minister Yuri Sentyurin said at the plenary session in the State Duma (lower house of parliament) on Friday.
"The Turkish Stream will be constructed simultaneously with tackling the issues related to the Nord Stream 2 (gas pipeline). This all will substantially mitigate transit risks for Russia’s gas supplies to the European market," he said.
According to Deputy Minister, it is difficult to unequivocally assert that the construction of the two gas pipelines, Turkish Stream and Nord Stream 2, will fully solve the issue of gas transit through Ukraine. "I would not assert it today," he said when asked by a Duma deputy whether the Turkish Stream launch will make it possible for Russia to do without Ukraine’s gas transit services. The issue is still up in the air as the volumes of Russia’s gas supplies to global market, particularly to Europe, are on the rise, Sentyurin added.
Meanwhile, the launch of the two lines of the gas pipeline will enable Moscow to seriously mitigate transit risks, he said. "The launch of this gas pipeline (Turkish Stream - TASS) is substantially mitigating transit risks and obviously allows to reduce the volume of gas to be pumped through the territory of our neighbors," Deputy Minister said.
As was reported earlier the State Duma approved the ratification of the agreement between Russia and Turkey on construction of two lines of the Turkish Stream pipeline earlier on Friday.
The Turkish Stream pipeline was announced by the Russian authorities in December 2014 to replace the South Stream pipeline. It was planned that the marine section of Turkish Stream would comprise four lines with the capacity of 15.75 bln cubic meters each. However, the talks on the project were suspended, particularly due to a crisis in the bilateral relations. In August 2016, following the meeting of presidents of the two countries a decision was made to resume the works on the Turkish Stream, set up a work group and create a roadmap.
The Turkish Stream project envisages the construction of a natural gas pipeline via the Black Sea to the European part of Turkey to be further extended to the border with Greece. The seabed section is about 910 kilometers and the mainland section through Turkey is 180 kilometers. Previously the project was estimated at 11.4 bln euro. It is supposed that gas supplies via the first line will be totally aimed for the needs of the growing Turkish market.