The Azerbaijan State News Agency

ECONOMY

KAZAKHSTAN JOINING TO BTC TO DISCUSS IN LATE MAY

The next round of negotiations between the Azerbaijani and Kazakhstani working groups on issues of Kazakhstani participation in the BTC (Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan) oil pipeline construction project will take place in the end of May. Natiq Aliyev, president of the SOCAR, has made this statement in his conversation with journalists. The main target of the negotiations is to prepare a draft intergovernmental agreement between Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan on the transportation of Kazakhstani oil via Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline.

As soon as an agreement on this draft is reached on the level of working groups headed by Kairgeldy Kabyldin, managing director of "KazMunaiGas" NC" CJSC, (RK) and Natiq Aliyev, president of the SOCAR, the document will be submitted to the governments of the two countries for consideration. When this agreement is inked, transit agreements will be signed between the investors of Aktau-Baku system and governments of Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan as well.

The head of the state oil company has observed that lawyers have already completed their work on the draft intergovernmental agreement. He says that in late May representatives of the two countries on the top level will meet to take a final decision on the main issues, on which the lawyers will have either agreed or disagreed so that the document would then be presented for consideration to the governments of the two countries.

"I do not know when the agreement is inked, our task is to fully prepare the intergovernmental agreement and to present it to the government for consideration," - N. Aliyev has explained.

The head of the SOCAR has observed that the ratification of this agreement in the Kazakhstani parliament still remains disputable. "We have different legislations and procedures for passing such documents. It is not practiced in Kazakhstan," - N. Aliyev has said, noting that the Kazakhstani party asserts that an agreement to ratify this document in the parliament of RK would create an undesirable precedent because other companies will also demand ratification in the parliament and it will become a sort of a rule. "In Azerbaijan this procedure is smooth, it gives confidence to investors, legislatively insuring all that is stipulated by an agreement. We think that it is normal," - N. Aliyev has said. "Our lawyers will see to it that non-ratification of this agreement in the parliament is not reflected on the rights of investors and инвесторов cargo shippers. It is still a very delicate issue. We have left it for the end. When there is a meeting on the highest level, probably, the presidents will discuss certain moments if they are not resolved from our point of view," - N. Aliyev has concluded.

To create the Aktau-Baku system the construction of new terminal for storage and transfer of oil and of junction lines is suggested in Kuryk (a port 76 km South East of Aktau). The capacity of the transferring system will be 20 million tons of oil per annum, up to 7.5 million tons will be transported during the first phase. The volume of investments will be defined when the intergovernmental agreement is inked. The new system will be built by the moment when the first oil from Kashagan field comes.

A separate company will be created to manage Aktau-Baku system, whose main investors will be four companies - ENI, TotalFinaElf, ConocoPhilips and Inpex, participating in the development of Kazakhstani field Kashagan and owning 15% share participation in the BTC Co (operator for the pipeline construction and operations).

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