EU drafts a deal to import more Azerbaijani gas
In a latest move on its quest to diversify its energy sources, European Commission proposed a draft deal to EU countries to import more of Azerbaijani gas to Europe, EU Observer reported.
The project, which needs approval from the EU governments before it gets off the ground, is part of the EU efforts to curb reliance on Russian gas.
According to the draft, both sides aspire to deliver at least 20 billion cubic meters of gas annually by 2027.
In order to reach that level of trade, additional investment will be required to the already existing Southern Gas Corridor, a series of pipelines from the Caspian Sea to Southeastern Europe.
The European Commision refused to comment on the deal but Kadri Simson, the EU’s energy commissioner is scheduled to visit Azerbaijan later this month.
The proposal comes at a time when Russia cuts off gas flow through Nord Stream, the single biggest pipeline carrying 55 billion cubic meters of gas yearly from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea.
Russia on Monday said it closed the pipeline for ten days due to maintenance work but markets and companies are worried the shutdown might be extended because of the war in Ukraine, Reuters reported.
The Trans-Adriatic pipeline, the final leg of the Southern Gas Corridor pipeline network, last year brought more than 8 billion cubic meters of Azeri gas into Greece, Albania and Italy.
The draft agreement said the EU and Azerbaijan would also examine the development of electricity interconnections and discuss future hydrogen trade.