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    Blue Stream to be extended to Mediterranean

    Hürriyet Haber
    06.02.2006 - 11:54 | Son Güncelleme:

    A pipeline that runs under the Black Sea carrying Russian gas to Turkey will be extended to carry gas supplies to Israel and Lebanon, said the Turkish Minister of Energy Hilmi Guler on Friday. Turkey's state-run gas company, Botas, and Russian Gazprom, which operate the Blue Stream pipeline, will hold talks on extending it from the Black Sea port of Samsun to Turkey's Ceyhan oil terminal on the Mediterranean. Following a meeting between Guler and Gazprom's CEO Alexei Miller, the Turkish energy minister said that the talks should be completed within the next two months.

    Guler said Miller also offered to extend the pipeline, which currently pipes 3 billion cubic meters of gas per year, westward to Greece and then to Italy. "A joint company will be formed for that project," Guler said.

    Miller suggested that a new pipeline also be built under the Black Sea in order to secure natural gas exports to Turkey. Turkey, a NATO member, is aspiring to become an energy hub for Europe. "We consider Turkey as a reliable partner to transit gas to third countries," Miller said.

    The Blue Stream has been operational for more than two years and is the world's deepest undersea pipeline, stretching from southern Russia under the Black Sea to the Durusu Metering Station, a gas terminal outside the port city of Samsun. An extension of the pipeline then carries the gas to Ankara.

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