Croatia, Greece, Italy Push for Trans-Adriatic Gas Pipeline

June 13, 2013

Croatia has joined Greece, Albania, and Italy in pushing for the Trans-Adriatic pipeline, which would bring natural gas to Europe from the Caspian region through Turkey, Bloomberg reports.

Representatives from the four nations as well as Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina will meet in Dubrovnik, Croatia, tomorrow to give “strong and clear political support for the pipeline and underline its commercial advantages,” Croatian Deputy Foreign Minister Josko Klisovic said.

The project, known as TAP, is competing with the Nabucco pipeline plan supported by Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary, to ship Azeri natural gas to Europe. Shah Deniz, a gas deposit group led by BP Plc (BP/), is expected by July to choose between the two projects to transport 10 billion cubic meters of gas annually to the European Union. The group’s partners also include Statoil ASA (STL), Total SA (FP) and State Oil Company of Azerbaijan, or Socar.

“Our message to Shah Deniz is that TAP is less costly as it’s shorter, and that all the governments involved support it,” Klisovic said in an interview in his office in Zagreb today. “This includes Italy, which is one of the biggest gas consumers in Europe.”

EU nations want to curb their reliance on gas deliveries from Russia through Ukraine after disruption in recent years over price disputes. TAP’s 800-kilometer (500-mile) route would go through Turkey through Greece, and Albania to Italy, while the 1,300-kilometer Nabucco would traverse Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary.

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