Azerbaijan continues to strengthen its ties with European countries within the Southern Gas Corridor project aimed at reaching energy markets of Europe.
The presence of bilateral cooperation between the governments, as well as multilateral agreements makes the projects in the energy sector more reliable and strong.
Trans Adriatic Pipeline project (TAP) is a good example of energy cooperation between Azerbaijan and Switzerland, the Federal Council of Switzerland told Trend.
“Azerbaijan and Switzerland signed a Memorandum of Understanding in the energy sector in 2007, and memorandum laid the foundation for the development of closer ties in this area. The implementation of the TAP project is an excellent example of our relations in the energy sector, and the Swiss company Axpo is one of the founders of the TAP consortium,” the Swiss Federal Council said.
The Council noted that the country considers security of supply through diversification as an integral component of its foreign energy policy.
“Switzerland has therefore supported the Southern Gas Corridor since the very beginning. Natural gas, constituting 14 percent of the country's total energy consumption (2017 data), is a significant contribution to Switzerland's energy sector. Considering the decline in natural gas production in Europe, TAP will diversify the sources and routes of gas supplies to Europe, and thus will benefit Switzerland,” the Council said.
TAP, along with TANAP, is a part of Southern Gas Corridor project. The project envisages transportation of gas from Azerbaijani Shah Deniz-2 gas field to Greece and southern Italy across the Adriatic Sea through Greece and Albania, and involves designing, construction and operation of the natural gas pipeline.
The Intergovernmental Agreement on the TAP project was signed by Albania, Italy and Greece in February 2013. The cost of the project is 4.5 billion euros.
The TAP project is one of the strategic objectives of the EU in the energy security and diversification of energy sources, chosen as the shortest and direct way to export natural gas from Azerbaijan to the European markets.
Construction of nearly 74.6 percent of the 878 km pipeline has been completed. The TAP pipeline is expected to be commissioned in 2020. The initial capacity of TAP will be 10 billion cubic meters of gas per year with the possibility of doubling it.
TAP shareholders include BP (20 percent), SOCAR (20 percent), Snam S.p.A. (20 percent), Fluxys (19 percent), Enagas (16 percent) and Axpo (5 percent).