SOCAR AQS, an Azerbaijani integrated drilling and well services management company, will dig 40 wells to expand the storage capacity at the Salt Lake (Tuz Golu) Natural Gas Storage Facility, located in central Anatolia, head of SOCAR AQS said on Tuesday.
In an exclusive interview with Anadolu Agency, Director General of SOCAR AQS Ramin Isayev said that by expanding the facility, tens of millions of dollar would be invested specifically for the storage expansion at the Salt Lake facility.
Currently, the facility has a capacity to store 600 million cubic meters (mcm) of gas, and has another 600 mcm of capacity under construction with plans to reach 5.4 billion cubic meters by 2023-24.
Together with SOCAR AQS, China CAMC Engineering Co. Ltd. along with IC ICTAS Construction Industries & Trade Inc. will jointly work to carry out the expansion project.
To execute this project, SOCAR AQS opened a representative office in Ankara on Oct. 18, the same day that Azerbaijan' commemorated the 28th anniversary of its independence, an event that Isayev described as a "meaningful and nice coincidence"
Commenting on the Salt Lake expansion project, he explained that the company aims to deliver the project by efficiently drilling the wells on time and within budget.
The Tuz Golu project is in the planning stage with the current mobilization of people and equipment, he explained.
"We would like to get involved in other projects in Turkey, in drilling for underground storage if needed and for oil and gas," he said.
Isayev explained that Azerbaijan is exporting its oil and natural gas across Turkish territory through SOCAR, Azerbaijan's state oil company which is also considered one of the biggest investors in Turkey with facilities located in Turkey's Izmir and Adana regions.
"I think Azerbaijan and Turkey are strategic partners in the field of energy developments. I hope that both Turkey and Azerbaijan will strengthen bilateral relations to our mutual benefit," he concluded.
By Gulsen Cagatay