AGRI partners to share stakes in joint venture for gas project

22:58, September 17, 2010      

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Romania, Azerbaijan and Georgia would take equal stakes in a cross-nation gas transport project, the Romanian Economy Ministry said on Friday.

The three countries each would hold 33 percent of a joint venture to be set up under the project called the Azerbaijan, Georgia, Romania Interconnection (AGRI), which would pipe Caspian Sea natural gas to western Europe through Romania, the ministry said in a press release.

However, the stakes would be 25 percent if Hungary joined in the project, it said.

Leaders of three countries signed a deal at a meeting to set up AGRI LNG held earlier this week in Baku, Azerbaijan. They also signed a memorandum of understanding on the project structure and its implementation principles.

Hungarian Premier Viktor Orban also participated in the summit to support the implementation of the project.

Azerbaijan, Georgia and Romania signed a memo in April this year to set up the Bucharest-based joint venture, which will conduct the feasibility study on the liquefied natural gas transport system from Baku to Constanta, a Black Sea port of Romania.

Under the project, Azerbaijan's gas will reach Georgia's Black Sea port of Poti via pipeline and then to Constanta by tankers after being liquefied at Poti. Some 7 billion cubic meters of natural gas is planned to be transported through the route to Romania each year.

Experts have estimated that the project will cost 2 to 4 billion euros (2.57 to 5.14 billion U.S. dollars).

Source: Xinhua


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