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The Southern Gas Corridor is an initiative of the European Commission for a natural gas supply route from Caspian and Middle Eastern regions to Europe. The goal of the Southern Gas Corridor is to reduce Europe's dependency on Russian gas and add diverse sources of energy supply.[1] The route from Azerbaijan to Europe consist of the South Caucasus Pipeline, the Trans-Anatolian Pipeline, and the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline.[2] The total investment of this route is estimated US$45 billion.[2] The main supply source would be the Shah Deniz gas field, located in the Caspian Sea.[3]

History

The European Union is dependent on other countries' supply sources of energy; around 54% of the EU's gross inland energy consumption came from imported sources.[4] Russia has been the main supplier, despite its recent decline, in natural gas, coal and crude oil for a number of years. Russia's dispute with transit countries is a reason for concern regarding the reliance on the country's imports.

The initiative was proposed in the European Commission's Communication "Second Strategic Energy Review – An EU Energy Security and Solidarity Action Plan" (COM/2008/781) in 2008.[5][6] The European Union identified a number of partner countries for this initiative, such as Azerbaijan, Turkey, Georgia, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Iraq, Egypt and Mashreq countries. Uzbekistan and Iran should represent, when political conditions permit, a further significant supply source for the EU.[6]

There have been numerous conferences revolving around the project. On 8 May 2009, the summit "Southern Corridor – New Silk Road" was held in Prague, addressing the purpose of the corridor.[7] In 2015, a Southern Gas Corridor Conference was hosted at the University of Houston, Texas. Representatives from gas companies, consulates, and other organizational authorities participated in developing relations and calculating productions. The countries that were represented at the conference were the United States, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Greece, and Italy.[8]<

The European Union is dependent on other countries' supply sources of energy; around 54% of the EU's gross inland energy consumption came from imported sources.[4] Russia has been the main supplier, despite its recent decline, in natural gas, coal and crude oil for a number of years. Russia's dispute with transit countries is a reason for concern regarding the reliance on the country's imports.

The initiative was proposed in the European Commission's Communication "Second Strategic Energy Review – An EU Energy Security and Solidarity Action Plan" (COM/2008/781) in 2008.[5][6] The European Union identified a number of partner countries for this initiative, such as Azerbaijan, Turkey, Georgia, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Iraq, Egypt and Mashreq countries. Uzbekistan and Iran should represent, when political conditions permit, a further significant supply source for the EU.[6]

There have been numerous conferences revolving around the project. On 8 May 2009, the summit "Southern Corridor – New Silk Road" was held in Prague, addressing the purpose of the corridor.[7] In 2015, a Southern Gas Corridor Conference was hosted at the University of Houston, Texas. Representatives from gas companies, consulates, and other organizational authorities participated in developing relations and calculating productions. The countries that were represented at the conference were the United States, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Greece, and Italy.[8]

The fourth meeting of the ministers within the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council was held in Baku on 15 February 2018. Albania and Azerbaijan agreed to establish a new company to create project of the Ionian - Adriatic Pipeline (IAP).[9][10] SOCAR and Albgaz company of Albania as well as, gas distributing companies of some countries such as Montenegro, Croatia and Albania signed two documents related to design of new pipelines. This project will connect to the Southern Gas Corridor.[9][10]

The opening ceremony of the Southern Gas Corridor took place at the Sangachal Terminal with the participation of [5][6] The European Union identified a number of partner countries for this initiative, such as Azerbaijan, Turkey, Georgia, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Iraq, Egypt and Mashreq countries. Uzbekistan and Iran should represent, when political conditions permit, a further significant supply source for the EU.[6]

There have been numerous conferences revolving around the project. On 8 May 2009, the summit "Southern Corridor – New Silk Road" was held in Prague, addressing the purpose of the corridor.[7] In 2015, a Southern Gas Corridor Conference was hosted at the University of Houston, Texas. Representatives from gas companies, consulates, and other organizational authorities participated in developing relations and calculating productions. The countries that were represented at the conference were the United States, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Greece, and Italy.[8]

The fourth meeting of the ministers within the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council was held in Baku on 15 February 2018. Albania and Azerbaijan agreed to establish a new company to create project of the Ionian - Adriatic Pipeline (IAP).[9][10] SOCAR and Albgaz company of Albania as well as, gas distributing companies of some countries such as Montenegro, Croatia and Albania signed two documents related to design of new pipelines. This project will connect to the Southern Gas Corridor.[9][10]

The opening ceremony of the Southern Gas Corridor took place at the Sangachal Terminal with the participation of Ilham Aliyev on 29 May 2018.[11][12]

The opening ceremony of the Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline took place in Eskisehir, Turkey with the participation of Presidents of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Ukraine on 12 June 2018.[13][14]

In the Trans-European Networks – Energy (TEN–E) program, the European Union designated three of the pipelines as of strategic importance (ITGI, Nabucco and White Stream)."[15] Also the Trans Adriatic Pipeline was identified that time as a Southern Corridor project.[5] It was planned that the Southern Corridor projects could provide the necessary transportation capacity to deliver 60–120 billion cubic metres per annum (2.1–4.2 trillion cubic feet per annum) of Caspian and Central Asian gas directly to Europe.[16]

As of 2017, the corridor would pass through Georgia, Turkey, Greece, Albania and Italy and consists of three main projects:

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