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UPDATE 1-Italy, Albania, Greece to sign TAP pipeline accord Thursday
September 26, 2012 / 3:56 PM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Italy, Albania, Greece to sign TAP pipeline accord Thursday

ROME, Sept 26 (Reuters) - The intergovernmental agreement for building the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) gas project that will link Italy, Greece and Albania will be signed in New York on Thursday, a spokesman for Italy’s Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday.

Earlier on Wednesday a government source had said the signing would be on Friday.

TAP is one of a number of competing projects to carry gas from Azerbaijan’s giant Shah Deniz II field to Europe which is keen to reduce its dependence on existing suppliers including Russia.

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

Italian utility Enel has shown an interest in the project.

TAP has been criticised for its lack of Italian partners, with some analysts arguing that a pipeline into Italy would never secure political backing without involvement of an Italian company as investor in the project.

Producers in the Shah Deniz II field in Azerbaijan, led by BP and Statoil, plan to ship around 16 billion cubic metres (bcm) a year through Turkey into Europe from 2017 or 2018.

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