September 12, 2011 / 10:28 AM / 8 years ago

EU opens talks on Caspian gas pipeline - Commission

BRUSSELS, Sept 12 (Reuters) - The European Union has agreed to negotiate a treaty with Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan to bring natural gas from the world’s fourth-largest reserves across the Caspian Sea to Europe, the bloc’s executive said on Monday.

The European Commission will lead negotiations on behalf of the whole 27-nation bloc on the proposed pipeline, which is part of a planned corridor of pipelines known as the Southern Corridor, designed to reduce EU dependence on Russian gas imports.

“Europe is now speaking with one voice, The trans-Caspian pipeline is a major project in the Southern Corridor to bring new sources of gas to Europe. We have the intention of achieving this as soon as possible,” EU energy chief Guenther Oettinger said in a statement. (Reporting by Charlie Dunmore, editing by Rex Merrifield)

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