Bargaining for Azeri gas

Bargaining for Azeri gas

ANKARA - Turkey says it has offered Azerbaijan a "fair price" of $200 per 1,000 cubic meters of natural gas, $80 more than the current deal, sources confirmed Friday.

But Azerbaijan is insisting on $250 per 1,000 cubic meters, delaying the deal.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was in Baku on Wednesday and held talks with top Azerbaijani officials on both political and energy issues.

Erdoğan accepted that the $120 per 1,000 cubic meters that Turkey pays for Azerbaijani gas was unfair compared to world standards. Turkey is paying between $400 and $450 for 1,000 cubic meters from Russia.Recently appointed Energy Minister Taner Yıldız held separate meetings Wednesday with Rovnag Adhullayev, the head of the Azerbaijani state oil and natural gas company, SOCAR, to re-adjust the gas prices. He proposed to increase the offer to $200 but the Azerbaijani side insisted on raising it to $250. According to sources, the parties are continuing their negotiations.

The Turkish Energy Ministry said Thursday that an increase in the cost of Azerbaijani natural gas will not affect domestic consumers. Turkey has bought about 6 billion cubic meters of Caspian natural gas annually since a pipeline from the Azerbaijani Shakh-Deniz field opened in 2007. Seeking an additional 8 billion cubic meters, Turkey is also trying to become an energy hub.
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