Nabucco begins nonbinding open season to ship Shah Deniz II gas

Nabucco Gas Pipeline International GMBH has launched the nonbinding first phase of an open season to book capacity on the 800-mile Nabucco pipeline. Nabucco would ship natural gas from Shah Deniz Stage 2 to Europe via a connection to the Trans-Anatolian Pipeline (Tanap) at the Turkish-Bulgarian border, crossing Hungary, Bulgaria, and Romania to reach the Central European Gas Hub in Baumgarten, Austria.

Nabucco will have an initial capacity of 10 billion cu m/year, expandable to 23 bcm/year to meet demand. The company expects Phase 1 of the open season to conclude by June 30 with a binding open season following in this year’s third quarter.

BP PLC’s Azerbaijan affiliate, which operates the Shah Deniz offshore gas field, and State Oil Co. of the Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR), jointly announced last month that they are evaluating final offers from both Nabucco and the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) to move Shah Deniz Stage 2 gas. BP said the Shah Deniz partners expect to decide between the two pipelines by next month (OGJ Online, Apr. 3, 2013).

TAP last month secured environmental and social impact permits from Albania for construction of the 20-bcm/year pipeline (OGJ Online, Apr. 11, 2013).

Contact Christopher E. Smith at chriss@ogjonline.com.

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