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Armenian expert on Azeri gas supply to Turkey

By Messenger Staff
Wednesday, May 6
Armenian analyst Viktor Iakubian has commented on the statement of President Aliyev of Azerbaijan that the supplying of Azeri natural gas to Turkey might be reconsidered if the latter opens its borders with Armenia without first resolving the Karabakh conflict, all natural gas produced by Azerbaijan then being sold to Russia. Iakubian says that since 2007 67% of Turkey’s gas supply has come from Russia through the Blue Stream. Turkey can also receive natural gas from Iran, so Iakubian thinks that if Azerbaijan cuts off its supply this will not affect the Turkish economy or population much.

Today Azerbaijan supplies Turkey through the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzerum pipeline. Georgia receives around 250 million cubic meters gas annually for transiting this. Since Georgia has refused to purchase gas from Russia it is completely dependent on Azerbaijani gas supply, and according to Iakubian if Azerbaijan stops the gas supply to Turkey Georgia will suffer most.

The gas cutoff could also hinder the further implementation of the White Stream project, which envisages transporting gas from the Georgian port of Supsa to Ukraine and on to EU countries. Iakubian thinks that the threat is part of a game being played between Baku, Moscow and Ankara because President Aliyev did not mention withdrawing from the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan project, which would have been a real ultimatum for Turkey.