Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is urging Egypt to export natural gas to Europe via the Nabucco natural gas pipeline project, which will carry gas from Central Asia via Turkey to Europe. Egypt already has a gas pipeline network to deliver gas to Jordan and Syria; extending the pipeline to hook up to the Nabucco pipeline would be straightforward.
Energy sources believe that Erdoğan's proposal is an attempt by Turkey to build a coalition against the growing cooperation between Israel and Cyprus, which want to export gas from Leviathan and Cypriot reserves. Europe could be an important market for this gas.
Russia will likely object to Erdoğan's proposal, in order to prevent competitors from entering the European natural gas market, which it currently dominates.
The Nabucco pipeline project was initiated in 2002 because of European worries about Russian gas deliveries. The project involves a 4,000-kilometer network of pipelines to delivery 31 billion cubic feet a gas a year, beginning in 2017. Suppliers will be Iraq, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, and possibly also Iran. The pipeline will transit Turkey to Bulgaria, and then to Romania, Hungary, and Austria.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on September 15, 2011
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