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Greece, Italy and Albania sign a tri-lateral intergovernmental agreement, demonstrating their full support for TAP

13 February 2013

The governments of Greece, Italy and Albania have today cemented their full support for and commitment to the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) project by signing a tri-lateral intergovernmental agreement (IGA).

Concluded at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens, the IGA solidifies a range of key commitments by Greece, Italy and Albania to the forward development, construction and operation of the TAP pipeline. Within the framework of the Community Treaties and the Energy Community Treaty, the IGA will ensure that the states cooperate in the timely delivery and efficient operation of the TAP pipeline.

Kjetil Tungland, TAP’s Managing Director, said: “I would like to thank all the governments for their support and dedication resulting in the signing of this important agreement today. This agreement between TAP's host countries lays the strong foundation and long term security that is required to move the project forward towards selection and construction. We now look ahead to continuing our fruitful cooperation in making the TAP project a reality.”

Michael Hoffmann, TAP’s External Affairs Director, stated: “The signing of the IGA further reinforces the host governments’ support for TAP from a legal and regulatory perspective. For TAP, this concludes the last remaining high level international political agreement, which is important for the upcoming selection process by the Shah Deniz Consortium.”

TAP is one of the pipeline projects being developed to transport Shah Deniz gas to Europe and is the only pipeline option that will cross Greece. The Shah Deniz Consortium will make their final selection of the Southern Gas Corridor project to transport Shah Deniz gas by June 2013.

The Trans Adriatic Pipeline will bring significant foreign direct investment and jobs associated with the construction of this major pipeline in all three host countries – Greece, Albania and Italy.
Signing the agreement on behalf of the three states’ governments were Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos, the Deputy Prime Minister and Energy Minister of Albania, Edmond Haxhinasto, and Italian Development Minister Corrado Passera. The signing ceremony was attended by representatives of the government of Azerbaijan, of the TAP Joint Venture and the three companies participating in the joint venture, and of the companies participating in the Shah Deniz II Consortium. High-ranking third-country officials were also in attendance.

Foreign Ministry announcement on the signing of the Greek-Albanian-Italian Trilateral Intergovernmental Agreement on the construction of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP)

Foreign Minister Avramopoulos’ speech at the signing ceremony for the intergovernmental agreement in support of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP)

About TAP

The Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) is a natural gas pipeline project. The pipeline will transport gas from the Caspian region via Greece and Albania and across the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy and further into Western Europe. The project is aimed at enhancing security of supply as well as diversification of gas supplies for the European markets. TAP will open a new so-called Southern Gas Corridor to Europe and establish a new market outlet for natural gas from the Caspian Sea.

The project is designed to expand transportation capacity from 10 to 20 bcm per year. TAP also envisages physical reverse flow of up to 80 per cent and the option to develop natural gas storage facilities in Albania to further ensure security of supply during any operational interruption of gas deliveries.

TAP’s shareholders are Axpo of Switzerland (42.5%), Norway’s Statoil (42.5%) and E.ON Ruhrgas of Germany (15%).

For further information and pictures from the IGA signing ceremony, please contact:media@tap-ag.com