EU gas dependency fears sparked by Ukraine crisis

The Ukraine crisis has increased the importance of the Southern Gas Corridor which will carry Caucasian natural gas to Europe via Turkey, experts agreed at the Caspian Forum in Brussels on Wednesday.

The Ukraine crisis has increased the importance of the Southern Gas Corridor which will carry Caucasian natural gas to Europe via Turkey, experts agreed at the Caspian Forum in Brussels on Wednesday.

BRUSSELS - The Ukraine crisis has increased the importance of the Southern Gas Corridor which will carry Caucasian natural gas to Europe via Turkey, experts agreed at the Caspian Forum in Brussels on Wednesday.

At the forum, co-hosted by Istanbul-based Hazar Strategy Institute and the European Parliament, experts discussed the need to decrease EU`s energy dependency on Russian gas by enabling the Southern Gas Corridor to include Iraqi and Eastern Mediterranean gas, as well.

The Southern Gas Corridor is estimated to cost around US$45 billion and it will include three major pipeline projects: the expansion of the South Caucasus Pipeline through Azerbaijan and Georgia, the construction of Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) across Turkey and the construction of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) though Greece, Albania and into Italy.

The Ukraine crisis has sparked a realisation by the EU of the significance of the TANAP and (TAP) pipelines more, said Haldun Yavas, Caspian Strategy Institute Secretary General to Anadolu Agency (AA) on the sidelines of the forum.

"The Ukraine crisis is putting the transmission of Russian gas into Europe under risk, and it made the EU aware of the necessity to have a pipeline across Turkey."

Vittorio Prodi, the Italian Socialist member of the European Parliament told AA that the EU should not depend on a single supply country, and added, "Italy joined Southern Gas Corridor Project because it is part of our political independence."

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