The Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) will launch in early June, according to Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday.
TANAP, which will carry Azeri gas to Turkey and then on to Europe, is considered the most important component of the Southern Gas Corridor (SGC).
'We will open TANAP in early June,' Erdogan said in a press conference after the meeting with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev at the presidential complex in Ankara.
'TANAP, as an important part of the Southern Gas Corridor, will contribute to all of Europe's energy security not only gas exchange between Turkey and Azerbaijan,' he added.
The project, with an investment of around $7.99 billion, will deliver 6 billion cubic meters of Azeri gas to Turkey and 10 billion cubic meters to Europe.
TANAP is currently 93.5 percent completed. The testing of Phase 0, which started on Jan. 23, and originates from the Turkey-Georgia border and proceeds up to Turkey's Eskisehir province, is still ongoing, Saltuk Duzyol, TANAP's general manager said on Tuesday, April 17 at TANAP's Eskisehir Measurement and Compressor station where Turkey receives Azeri gas.
The TANAP project has seen the employment of around 13,000 and currently has around 7,000 employed, according to Duzyol.
The estimated investment cost was $11.7 billion at the start of the project, but this figure has been revised down to $7.99 billion based on updates from the procurement process and project management.
Currently, the Southern Gas Corridor Company holds a 51 percent share, Turkey's BOTAS has a 30 percent interest, BP holds 12 percent and SOCAR Turkey has the remaining 7 percent.
- STAR refinery to be open latest in October
Erdogan also said that the STAR refinery in the Aliaga Peninsula in Turkey, which is Azerbaijan state oil company SOCAR's biggest investment in the country, will open in September or October.
The refinery has a capacity to process 10 million tons of crude oil per year.
The facility is currently under construction on a 2,400-hectare site on the Aliaga Peninsula in the Aegean province of Izmir. Almost 98 percent of the construction works and 98.7 percent of the project as a whole has been completed so far, according to a company statement.
The STAR refinery will process its first product at the end of September, which will supply domestic markets via tanker trucks, Mesut Ilter, the general manager of STAR Refinery, was quoted as saying in early March.
The testing of the units will be conducted from July with the aim of safely finalizing the project in due course, Ilter said.
'The STAR refinery will be one of the important dynamics of the Turkish economy. When fully operational, we expect to contribute $1.5 billion to decrease Turkey's current account deficit,' Ilter said.
The refinery will be put into service with a total investment of $6.3 billion and backed by Turkey's incentive grant.
The refinery will produce a wide range of oil products, including 1.6 million tons of naphtha. Diesel, one of the key contributors to the current account deficit, will also be produced along with jet fuel, and LPG.
By Huseyin Erdogan