Azerbaijan hikes up gas exports to Georgia

SOCAR's president said a portion of the gas from the Shah Deniz field will be used locally while some will be exported to Georgia and Turkey. Photo by Georgia's Energy Ministry., 01 Mar 2016 - 14:18, Tbilisi,Georgia

Azerbaijan is increasing the amount of natural gas it supplies to Georgia almost two-fold.

Georgia will receive an additional 500 million cubic meters of natural gas from Azerbaijan, Georgia's main gas supplier, bringing the amount it receives to 1.3 billion cubic metres (m3) per year.

The extra gas will help Georgia fill its gas deficit during winter.

This decision was announced by president of Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR Rovnag Abdullayev after the second meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council in Baku on Monday, February 29, reported Azerbaijani news agency Trend.

Previously, we supplied 800 million cubic meters of gas to Georgia from the Shah Deniz gas field annually. We have managed to increase the supply through that route to 1.5 billion cubic meters, also raising the exported gas volumes to 1.5 billion cubic meters via a pipeline connecting the two countries in Azerbaijan’s Gazakh district,” Abdullayev said.

He added there was an opportunity to transfer an extra 500 million m3 of gas from the Shah Deniz gas field.

We will use some of the Shah Deniz gas in Azerbaijan and export the other part to Georgia and Turkey. Before we did not have the technical opportunities to increase our gas supply to Georgia,” Abdullayev said.

Each year Georgia used 2.4 billion m3 of natural gas, stated Trend.

Georgia imported gas from several sources, including Russia. Towards the end of last year Georgia engaged in talks with Russian energy giant Gazprom to renew the current contract of gas exchange.

Like the previous rounds, the third round of negotiations in Austria’s capital Vienna in February ended without success, however a deal was expected to be reached "in few days”, said Georgia’s Energy Minister Kakha Kaladze.

We will complete negotiations with Gazprom in few days and will get the result which is needed for our sector and for our country,” Kaladze said today after returning from Azerbaijan where he attended the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council meeting.

Today 10 percent of the gas Russia exported to Armenia went to Georgia however at the negotiations Gazprom said it would pay Georgia for the pipeline use instead of offering gas, as per the old agreement. Georgia’s Energy Minister Kakha Kaladze refused this proposal.

Meanwhile in mid-February head of the National Iranian Gas Export Company Alireza Kameli said Iran would export 200 million m3 of gas to Georgia.