Gazprom announced for the 1st time on January 24, 2017, that it may be interested in using the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline and Poseidon as a method of delivering Russian gas to Italy.
Trans Adriatic Pipeline is a pipeline project to transport natural gas, starting from Greece–Turkey border at Kipoi, Evros, where it will be connected with the Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline.
It will cross Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea and come ashore in Italy near San Foca. The total length of the pipeline will be 878 kilometres.
The initial capacity of the pipeline will be about 10 billion cubic metres of natural gas per year, with the option to expand the capacity up to 20 billion cubic metres.
The Poseidon pipeline, the offshore section of the Interconnector Turkey-Greece-Italy (ITGI), is designed as a multi-source import project that could substantially contribute to Europe’s security of supply through diversification of sources and/or routes. The project is currently designed to transport up to 12 Bcm/y (billion cubic metres of natural gas per year) from potential sources expected to be available at Greek borders.
Addressing the European Gas conference in Vienna January 24, 2017, Gazprom deputy chairman Alexander Medvedev said Russia has sufficient installed capacity upstream to deliver more than 100bn m³/yr of extra gas to Europe but that it faces an infrastructure problem.
He added: «In order to bring this gas to Europe we need additional infrastructure, which we are working on with our European partners – Nord Stream 2 and Turkish Stream. This capacity will not be sufficient to bring all this to Europe. So this is why we are talking to use available capacity on the Poseidon project that will be ready soon, or maybe TAP.»
Ever since Russia's president Vladimir Putin 1st announced the Turkish Stream project on 1 December 2014, analysts have argued that it would be logical for Gazprom to consider using the 878-km TAP pipeline, now being built, to carry at least part of the Turkish Stream flow onwards to Europe.
This is because the 2nd half of TAP’s eventual 20bn m³/y capacity is to be developed on an open-access basis and, at present, it is far from clear that any other supplier could be in a position to supply gas for this 10bn m³/yr of extra capacity in advance of any prospective Gazprom supply.
Before Medvedev’s comment, neither Gazprom nor TAP had even hinted at any contact concerning possible Gazprom input into TAP, which is scheduled to open with an initial 10bn m³/yr capacity at the start of 2020.
Medvedev’s comment that the Poseidon project for a pipeline connection from Greece to southern Italy would be ready soon appears to relate not to actual construction but to the completion of studies.
After Gazprom chairman Alexey Miller signed a MoU on February 24 last year with Greece’s importer Depa and Italy’s Edison on the possible delivery of 12bn m³/yr of Russian gas to Italy via Greece and an Ionian Sea crossing, he declared that «the feasibility studies and economic assessments will be completed by the end of 2016.»
The delivery of Russian gas to Italy via this route will require a 600-km pipeline across Greece from Turkish Stream’s planned terminal at Ipsala/Kipoi on the Turkish-Greek border to the Ionian coast as well as the 207-km subsea Poseidon pipeline.