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Oil of the Caspian Sea

At night petroleum drilling installations sparkle like New Year trees. Surrounded by a forest of drilling equipment, Baku - the capital of Azerbaijan, was the main petroleum center the last century. Today it gains again its position: Baku becomes one of the capitals of oil.

At night petroleum drilling installations sparkle like New Year trees. Surrounded by a forest of drilling equipment, Baku - the capital of Azerbaijan, was the main petroleum center the last century. Today it gains again its position: Baku becomes one of the capitals of oil.

September 18, the last year, the first steel pipe, which has marked official opening of a new oil pipeline construction was installed in petroleum terminal Sangatchal (the south of the city). 1 million barrels of petroleum will be daily transported from the Caspian Sea to the Turkish terminals on Mediterranean Sea.

The length of the pipeline will add up to 1750 km. The cost of this project is estimated around 3 billion dollars. It will be the first petroleum pipeline delivering raw material to the world market, which will not cross the territory of Russia. Petroleum stocks of the biggest closed sea of the world exceed 40 billion barrels, which is approximately 2-3 % of the world reserves of petroleum (and 4 % of gas).

Spenser Abraham has named the territory of Caspian Sea a strategic zone of USA, the common part connecting Russia, Middle East and the Central Asia. Many western companies are ready to take part in the project. French company Spie has just concluded a 160 million euro contract for construction of two sections of the terminal. French - English consortium Eurocopter has bought in the beginning of October 6 helicopters from Baku (for 52 million euro) to provide services for the platform.

Surprisingly, from the moment of USSR disintegration in Azerbaijan could not be found a droplet of petroleum. Big companies have totally invested more than 700 million dollars in development of deposits. But they invested in the near state Kazakhstan, instead of here, in July, 2000, huge deposits were discovered in Kashagan, which were the biggest for the last thirty years (from 10 to 30 billion barrels) were disclosed. Azerbaijan cannot be called Eldorado, but it is placed close to Kazakhstan petroleum and besides its reserves are sufficient to provide for the living.

Diplomatic support of Washington represents for Baku support of independence. After the shock of September, 11, and in connection with a new alliance of Russia and USA, the relation between president of Azerbaijan, Aliev (the general of KGB in the past) and the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin (also the general of KGB) have considerably improved. After 10 years of confrontation, Moscow and Baku in 2002 have signed, at last, two important agreements: one concerns an establishment of the borders in Caspian sea (despite of rough protests on the part of Teheran), another - an establishment by Moscow of a military radars station Gabala (a part of the former USSR system for reflection of ballistic missiles attacks).

Moscow has changed its opposition attitude to the pipeline and even is going to invest in this project.


Author: Natalia Nohrina

Source : Neftegaz.ru