SOCAR: Iran can not compete with Azerbaijan in Georgian market

Baku. Agshin Rafigoglu - APA-Economics. SOCAR Energy Georgia assesses Iran’s plans to transport natural gas to Georgia through Armenia normal, SOCAR Energy Georgia’s Director General Mahir Mammadov told APA-Economics,

“If Georgia needs extra gas, it can import. This will not affect volume of gas transported by SOCAR to Georgia. We have an agreement with Georgian government till 2025. According to agreement, SOCAR Energy Georgia will supply all social sectors with natural gas. If we can not supply anytime due to any reasons, Georgian side has opportunity to import gas from other sources”, Mammadov said.


According to him, demand of Georgian market for natural gas increased 8-9% every year.


“Transportation and sale of business gas to Georgia are carried out in accordance with open market and competition. Currently, we meet demand of other consumers in Georgia. Moreover, we offer reasonable price”, Mammadov added.


He says the natural gas to be transported by Iran to Georgia through Armenia will not establish a competition: “Georgian market is too small and no competition will be established. There are not mechanisms of gas transportation from Iranian side to Georgia. Negotiations are still being held. If this mechanism starts, there will be need a place, market for this gas. If the price will be lower than Azerbaijan’s, the a competition will be established. However, Georgian market is too small and our agreement allows us to operate conveniently”.  


According to media, Iran has held negotiations with Georgia on sending its gas to the Caucasian nation through Armenia, Managing Director of the National Iranian Gas Exports Company (NIGEC) Alireza Kameli says.


“Based on negotiations with Georgia, we are supposed to take gas to the Armenian border, for Georgia to receive it at its border with Armenia,” he was quoted as saying by IRNA on Monday.


“For signing a deal, however, the gas exports plan must be economical for Georgia,” Kameli said, without elaboration.


The plan is to transfer 300-500 million cubic feet a day of Iranian gas through a pipeline for use in power generation in Georgia, he added. Kameli stressed that the planned gas exports to Georgia were intended for domestic use and not for Europe. “The issue of exports to Europe through a pipeline is out of question in our view and our priority is exports in LNG form (to Europe),” he said.


Georgian Energy Ministry said that no agreement exists with Iran on natural gas transportation to Georgia for the present.


“Media reports that Iran starts natural gas transportation to Georgia through Armenia for production of 8-15 mln cubic meters of energy. Currently, no agreement exists with Iran on natural gas transportation to Georgia. Of course, the issue of natural gas transportation has not solved either. Iran is the largest gas producer of the world and holds talks with all potential customers in the region. The aim is to supply Georgia with stable gas for long-term perspective”, the statement says.



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