Russia and Turkey recently agreed to negotiate increased purchases of natural gas and electricity by Turkey, Turkish Energy Minister Cumhur Ersumer conveyed.
Following a meeting with visiting Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov, Ersumer relayed his nation’s intent to purchase an additional 12 million cubic meters (47 million cubic feet) of Russian gas per month to commence in November.
Statistics issued by Turkey's staterun oil company BOTAS, revealed that Turkey procured 9.5 billion cubic meters of gas from Russia in 1999, via a pipeline that traverses Romania, Bulgaria and the Ukraine.
"There is no problem with regard to the amount of gas Russia can supply. But there was the need to construct new facilities in Ukraine, Romania and Bulgaria to increase the gas flow," Ersumer remarked.
Russia, the main supplier to Turkey of natural gas, is working with Turkey on an additional gas pipeline venture, dubbed Blue Stream, which will extend from the Southern gas plant of Izobilnoy, across the Black Sea floor, to the Turkish coastal city of Samsun.
Construction of the 1,213 kilometer (758mile) pipeline began in February 2000. The pipeline is to deliver eight billion cubic meters of gas to Turkey per year once it becomes operational in autumn 2001. Turkey holds a contract to buy Russia's gas from the Blue Stream pipeline for $114 per thousand cubic meters.
Turkey's future gas use depends both on its economy and its ability to build new gasfired power plants to produce electricity. The country's recent passage of international arbitration legislation encouraged foreign investors that will build the new plants. – (Albawaba-MEBG)
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