Azerbaijan and the US are going to sign a grant agreement in Baku today with regards to the development of the feasibility study for the construction of a Trans-Caspian gas pipeline.
The consortium of companies MottMcDonald Ltd (UK), Kantor Management Consultants (Greece), KLC Law Firm (Greece) and ASPI Consulting Engineers (Azerbaijan) developed an initial feasibility study of possible ways for gas transportation from Turkmenistan to Europe via Azerbaijan under the Interstate Oil and Gas Transport to Europe (INOGATE) project. The possible transportation of gas via the Caspian seabed through pipelines is considered the priority route. Moreover, opportunities for gas transportation via Russia and Iran are also being viewed. An initial cost of the construction of a subsea gas pipeline (at current prices for services and materials) is valued at $11.5 billion. Its discharge capacity might constitute 22 billion cu m a year. In the 1990s, the budget of such a project would be some $3 billion.
INOGATE is an international cooperation program, which targets assistance to the regional integration system of oil and gas pipelines, as well as the implementation of oil and gas transportation via the said systems to CIS countries and in the direction of the European markets. The program acts as a stimulus to attract private investors and international financial organizations for the projects. The countries which have signed the Frame Agreement are Azerbaijan, Albania, Armenia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Turkey, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and Croatia. (iranoilgas.com)