EU names Nabucco pipeline coordinator

Jozias Van Aartsen, former foreign minister of the Netherlands, has been appointed the European Union's coordinator for the proposed 31 billion cu m/year Nabucco gas pipeline.

Uchenna Izundu
International Editor

LONDON, July 23 -- Jozias Van Aartsen, former foreign minister of the Netherlands, has been appointed the European Union's coordinator for the proposed 31 billion cu m/year Nabucco gas pipeline, which has received fast-track status as a key infrastructure project.

In his new role, which received backing from the European Parliament's Industry, Research, and Energy Committee July 17, Van Aartsen will be charged with ensuring the successful implementation of the 3,300 km pipeline. The €5 billion pipeline will deliver gas to Europe from a variety of sources including Iran, the Middle East, Turkey, Russia, and the Caspian region by 2012.

Companies involved in Nabucco are OMV AG, MOL Rt., Botas, Transgaz, and Bulgargaz.

Construction of the first 2,000 km of the line, which is scheduled to start in 2009, will cover the planned route between Ankara, Turkey, and Baumgarten, Austria. After the first phase, existing pipeline facilities between the Turkish-Georgian and Iranian borders will be used for an interim 2 years so the new pipeline can be connected to the Turkish borders. Initial pipeline capacity will be 8 billion cu m, while construction of the remaining pipeline will be finished in parallel.

Contact Uchenna Izundu at uchennai@pennwell.com.

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