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14 Nov, 2008 09:25

Baku energy summit mulls gas pipeline routes

An alternative energy route to Europe is the main topic at the energy summit in the Azerbaijani capital of Baku. Azerbaijan, Georgia and Ukraine – along with some eastern European countries – are discussing possible routes to carry C

This includes the realisation of the proposed Nabucco pipeline project that will carry Turkmen and  Azerbaijani gas to Europe. Russia is building a rival project to Nabucco – the South Stream pipeline. US energy officials who came to Baku backed the Nabucco project, saying South Stream will be expensive and difficult to build.

But Konstantin Simonov, Head of the Energy Security Fund points out Nabucco brings serious risks to security of supply.

“The project from Russia directly to Europe, and the project of Nabucco is from Turkmenistan to Kazakhstan, then under the Caspian sea, then Azerbaijan, then Georgia, then Turkey.  So you see – 6 countries in this pipeline. Its not only a question of money, its not only the questions of lands of this pipe, it’s a question of political risk Because if you have 5 countries in this line, of course, the risk is more serious.  If you have Russia and, for example, Bulgaria or Rumania, because Bulgaria and Rumania are now the European Union.”