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Gas Pipeline TAP Completes $4.5B Project Financing

The Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP)—one of the European Union’s (EU) key strategic infrastructure projects to diversify Europe’s gas deliveries away from Russia—has secured US$4.5 billion (3.9 billion euro) in project financing, paving the way for first deliveries of gas from Azerbaijan to Italy in 2020.

TAP reached the financial close of the project financing in December 2018, the company developing and building the gas pipeline said in a statement on Friday.

The project financing is provided by a group of 17 commercial banks, alongside the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB). Part of the financing is covered by export credit agencies bpifrance, Euler Hermes, and Sace.

“With project financing now concluded, TAP can progress to the final completion of the project and delivery of Shah Deniz II gas in 2020,” said Luca Schieppati, TAP’s Managing Director.

As of November 2018, TAP was 82.4 percent completed.

TAP is a key part of the Southern Gas Corridor—a key infrastructure project for Europe aimed at diversifying gas supplies away from Russia and bringing natural gas from the Caspian Sea region to European markets.

The Southern Gas Corridor consists of several separate energy projects with a total investment of around US$40 billion.

One is the US$28-billion Shah Deniz 2 gas development in Azerbaijan, which BP and its partners started up in July last year. Shah Deniz 2 is the starting point of the Southern Gas Corridor for gas supplies into Europe expected to reduce European dependence on Russian gas.

The Southern Gas Corridor will include three pipelines—the South Caucasus Pipeline (SCPX) to Azerbaijan and Georgia; the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) to Turkey; and TAP, planned to cross Greece, Albania, and end up in Italy.

At the end of November, TAP and TANAP successfully completed their connection at the Turkish-Greek border.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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