Maroš Šefčovič, European Commission’s Vice-President for the Energy Union, will represent the Commission in a ceremony to launch the construction works of the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) in Thessaloniki, Greece on Tuesday, May 17. The event is hosted by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.
TAP will be an 870 km long gas pipeline running from Komotini in Greece to Puglia in Italy, via Albania. It will be used to transport gas from Shah Deniz II gas field in the Caspian Sea.
Alongside the two other related pipeline projects – the Trans-Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) which runs across Turkey and the Southern Caucasus Pipeline (SCP), which runs through Azerbaijan and Georgia – TAP will open up the Southern Gas Corridor. It is identified as one of the EU’s ‘projects of common interest’.
Vice-President Šefčovič said: “Once complete, TAP will be a major asset in European energy security tool box. By opening up access to gas from Azerbaijan, TAP will allow many countries, including in Central and South East Europe to diversify their sources of gas. Southern Gas Corridor will be vital for reaching the Energy Union objectives of diversification of sources, routes and energy security. Therefore timely completion is crucial so that gas from the new suppliers can flow to Europe by 2020.”
Initially, approximately 10 billion cubic meters of gas will flow along the Southern Gas Corridor route when it opens in 2019-2020. Given the potential supplies from the Caspian region, and in the future potentially also from the Middle East, and the East Mediterranean, the EU however, aims to increase this volume in the long-term.