TAP Starts Building Work in Albania
The TransAdriatic Pipeline (TAP) company began construction work September 30 in Albania, it said in a statement. The occasion was marked by an inauguration ceremony near the town of Fier, attended by the prime minister of Albania, Edi Rama, his energy minister Damian Gjiknuri, and TAP CEO Ian Bradshaw.
As one of the largest foreign investments in the country, TAP will have a positive impact on the country’s energy sector and will help encourage other foreign investments, the ministers said. Bradshaw said the steel pipes on the ground, heavy machinery in the background and the right of way being cleared and trenches dug waiting for pipe to be laid were evidence of the thousands of safe hours worked.
To date, 8 km of pipe have been welded and 56% of the pipes delivered, and over 94% of the access roads and bridges are complete.
The TAP route
TAP will transport natural gas from the giant Shah Deniz II field in Azerbaijan to Europe. The 878 km long pipeline will connect with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (Tanap) at the Turkish-Greek border at Kipoi, cross Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in southern Italy.
TAP’s routing can facilitate gas supply to several southeastern European countries, including Bulgaria, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia and others. TAP’s landfall in Italy provides opportunities for further transport of Caspian natural gas to some of the largest European markets such as Germany, France, the UK, Switzerland and Austria. TAP said. There are still some local difficulties in San Foca though where the major has not welcomed the pipeline's arrival.
TAP says it will promote the economic development and job creation along the pipeline route; it will be a major source of foreign direct investment and it is not dependent on grants or subsidies. With first gas sales to Georgia and Turkey targeted for late 2018, first deliveries to Europe could start in early 2020.
TAP’s shareholding is comprised of BP (20%), Azerbaijan state Socar (20%), Italian Snam (20%), Belgian Fluxys (19%), Spain's Enagas (16%) and Swiss generator Axpo (5%).