POLITICS


20th anniversary of East-West energy corridor marked in Tbilisi

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Tbilisi, May 16 AZERTAC

Georgia is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Baku-Supsa project with Azerbaijan – the "project of the century” that transfers oil from Azerbaijan through Georgia to Turkey and on to Europe.

Georgia and Azerbaijan marks 20 years since both countries penned a deal to launch the project, high officials from both sides said the Baku-Supsa pipeline solidified the countries’ close cooperation in the energy sector.

At a special event Georgia’s Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili called the Baku-Tbilisi-Supsa pipeline the "project of the century” as it created "stability” and was a "guarantee of piece” in the South Caucasus. The project also cemented the image of Georgia as a transit country for oil and gas and goods.

Azerbaijan’s Prime Minister Artur Rasizade, representatives from the BP and several ambassadors also attended today’s celebration in Tbilisi marking the 20th anniversary of the project.

The Western Route Export Pipeline (WREP) commonly known as the Baku-Tbilisi-Supsa pipeline or Baku-Supsa pipeline, is 830km long that transports oil from the Chirag field in the Caspian Sea via the Sangachal terminal in Azerbaijan to the Supsa terminal in western Georgia. Just under half of the pipeline is located on Georgian territory.

WREP, which became fully operational in 1999, is capable of transporting up to 100,000 barrels of oil a day and ensures transporting oil through Georgia and on to world markets, said British Petroleum (BP).

Twenty years ago, on March 8, 1996 Azerbaijan’s National Leader Heydar Aliyev and Georgia’s former president Eduard Shevardnadze signed an agreement to construct the Baku-Tbilisi-Supsa pipeline, which laid the foundation for the East-West Energy Corridor.

Once the deal was signed a project was launched with the involvement of BP and international partners.

Georgia’s PM stressed the country’s "important” transit role in providing oil and gas to the European Union (EU). He said Georgia understook its role and responsibility as a transit country and fully supported the current and future energy projects that would ensure the diversification of routes for transporting the world’s energy resources.

Azerbaijan`s Premier delivered a speech at the event. The Prime Minister highlighted historically existing relations between the two countries.

The Prime Minister said the national development road, which was founded by national leader Heydar Aliyev today, is successfully contined by President Ilham Aliyev.

As an example of successful cooperation between the three countries Kvirikashvili named the South Caucasus Pipeline as well as the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and Baku-Tbilisi-Supsa projects.

Meanwhile Georgia’s Energy Minister Kakha Kaladze praised the Baku-Tbilisi-Supsa project as the beginning of strategic and distinguished relations between Georgia and Azerbaijan.

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