UPDATE 1-Putin: Kazakhstan may take part in Samsun-Ceyhan

Thu Oct 22, 2009 1:50pm BST

Quotes

   

* Kazakhstan may help fill Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline

* Putin: South Stream may be finished ahead of Nord Stream

* Kazahstan pres says ready to participate in Samsun-Ceyhan

(Adds Putin quotes, background)

MOSCOW, Oct 22 (Reuters) - Kazakhstan may supply oil for the Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline linking Turkey's Black Sea and Mediterranean coasts, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin told his Turkish counterpart during a video link on Thursday.

"Our Kazakh colleagues expressed their readiness for joint work to fill this oil pipeline system," Putin told Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan. Putin's spokesman later confirmed that he was referring to the Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline.

Italy's Eni (ENI.MI) and Turkey's Calik hold 50 percent each of the pipeline project. Italy, Russia and Turkey signed an accord in Milan to build the pipeline. Eni will play a leading role in its construction.

Kazakh president Nursultan Nazarbayev, who was in Turkey on Thursday said his country was ready to participate in the Samsun-Ceyhan project, but he gave no further details.

Nazarbayev was due to meet Erdogan on Tursday.

The 550-km (340-mile) pipeline will have a maximum capacity of 1.5 million barrels a day. Eni Chief Executive Paolo Scaroni has said oil from the Kashagan and Karachaganak fields in Kazakhstan could be used to fill it.

Putin, Erdogan and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi on Thursday also discussed the South Stream gas pipeline, which is being built under the Black Sea and is seen as the main rival to the U.S.- and European Union-backed Nabucco pipeline.

"This project has every chance of being completed before the similar project in the Baltic Sea -- Nord Stream," Putin was quoted by Russian agencies as telling his counterparts.

Russia is pushing for the construction of South Stream and Nord Stream in order to deliver gas to its European Union customers directly, bypassing transit countries such as Ukraine. (Reporting by Gleb Bryanski and Selcuk Gokoluk in Ankara; Writing by Gleb Bryanski)

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