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Nabucco & Shah Deniz Consortium Sign Joint Declaration

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 1/11/2013, Location: Asia

On January 10, a ministerial meeting on Nabucco project was held in Sofia, Bulgaria. Representatives of Shah Deniz and Nabucco projects, governments of Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Turkey and Austria, as well as European Investment Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and European Commission participated at the meeting. Azerbaijan was represented by a delegation led by Deputy Minister of Industry and Energy Natiq Abbasov. SOCAR officials and experts were also in the delegation.

The current state of negotiations held within the Nabucco project and the upcoming issues were discussed at the meeting moderated by Bulgarian side. Representatives of the European Commission and the governments of the participant countries expressed positive opinion about the project development. Participants of the meeting noted their interest in transportation of Azerbaijani gas to European market and the development of competition in this market. Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov emphasized the importance of Nabucco project for his country.

Turkish deputy minister of energy and natural resources Murat Mercan gave details about TANAP project and reminded that Intergovernmental Agreement between Azerbaijan and Turkey was ratified by the parliaments of the two countries. It was noted that TAP and Nabucco West projects are in competition for Azerbaijani gas export route to Europe and a final pipeline selection decision is expected to be made in June 2013.

The sides have signed Joint Declaration during the meeting stating that Nabucco Gas Pipeline International Gmbh (''NIC''), the shareholders in NIC (''OMV, BOTAS, BEH, Transgaz, RWE, FGSZ,) and potential investors (SOCAR, BP, Statoil and Total) have reached agreement in principle on joint funding of the development costs of the Nabucco West up to the pipeline selection decision for Shah Denizí European export route, the granting to potential investors of equity options of 50% to participate as shareholders in NIC following a positive pipeline selection decision by the Shah Deniz Consortium in favor of Nabucco West.

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