Russia's Pre-Caspian pipeline a blow to EU & US - 2007

The Russian Federation has finally responded to the western sponsored "Trans-Caspian" gas pipeline project (see article below about the Nabucco/Trans-Caspian pipeline) and other inroads into the Caucasus and Central Asian region by finalizing an agreement with the governments of Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan that would divert Caspian Sea region's gas/oil distribution into the Russian Federation for subsequent distribution westward. This agreement severely undermines the West's plans for the region as it also weakens the fledgling role the Turkish state had begun to play as a hub for oil and gas distribution. What's more, in addition to the new Central Asian "Pre-Caspian" pipeline agreement, an oil pipeline project called "Alexandroupolis-Burgas" is being planned that will transport Russian oil from the Bulgarian Black Sea port of Burgas to the Greek Aegean port of Alexandroupolis. This pipeline will be another route for Russian oil that will be bypassing Turkey. The pipeline's construction is set to begin in 2008 and is estimated to be completed by 2011. As with the Pre-Caspian pipeline, the geopolitical ramifications of the Alexandroupolis-Burgas pipeline is quite significant in that Russia is not only engaging European Union members Greece and Bulgaria 'directly,' it is bypassing its major competitor in the region, Turkey, and is further monopolizing the oil/gas distribution into western Europe. Russia has thereby strategically placed itself into a position that will directly impact the European economy. These actions are the continuation of Moscow's multi-pronged attempts at directly impacting the politics and economy of the region in question by empowering and rewarding nations that have healthy relations with Moscow. Within this geopolitical backdrop, I see how an independent Kosovo, in conjunction with NATO backed Albania and Turkey, would be used by the West as a regional 'counterbalances' to a potential political/economic alliance developing between regional "Orthodox" nations, more specifically between the nations of Russia, Greece and Serbia. Naturally, these geopolitical formulations also explain the hostile attitudes that exists in certain circles within the West against the pro-Russian/pro-Iranian Armenian Republic.

Arevordi

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Russia's Pre-Caspian pipeline a blow to EU and U.S.


2007

President Putin has signed an agreement with his Kazakh and Turkmen counterparts to build the Pre-Caspian Sea gas pipeline. The U.S. and EU have been pushing for the alternative Trans-Caspian pipeline which would bypass Russia. Russia's Caspian project, known as the Pre-Caspian pipeline is designed to provide huge reserves of gas from Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan with a route through Russia to European markets. “This pipeline will provide long-term large supplies of gas to our partners. It will also become a considerable contribution to energy stability in Europe. In a telephone conversation with the President of Turkmenistan we have confirmed our common intention to carry out existing agreements and develop our partnership,” said Putin. “We also discussed our co-operation in atomic energy, in particular the joint construction of an atomic energy station in Kazakhstan and the further integration of the nuclear industrial facilities of our countries. We have an agreement in principal now and have assigned the corresponding departments to work out this question by May 2008,” Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev added...

Source: http://www.russiatoday.ru/news/news/18749

Pre-Caspian Pipeline Angers U.S. Because It Does Not Fit Its Policy - Denisov


Russia's agreements with Central Asian countries to build a pre-Caspian gas pipeline "are getting on Washington's nerves" because they do not fit its energy transportation strategy, Russian First Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Denisov told Interfax. "The U.S. has been lobbying the idea of an East-West energy corridor for a long time. Its aim is to arrange the transportation of hydrocarbons from the Caspian region bypassing the territories of Russia and Iran," he said. The Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and Baku-Tbilisi-Erzerum pipelines have already been built, the deputy minister said, adding that "this notorious trans-Caspian gas pipeline is intended to support them". "The political motives behind all of these projects are evident. The pre-Caspian pipeline clearly does not fit this concept, which has caused (Washington's) nervous reaction," he said. However, he refrained from commenting on statements by several U.S. officials on the pre-Caspian pipeline. "The decision to build the pre-Caspian pipeline was reached based on a careful calculation both of the benefit to the participants from the implementation of this project, and the conditions required to bring it into existence," Denisov said. He said that possible technical and ecological risks of the project have been reduced to nothing, because the pipeline will follow an existing route along the Caspian shore. "As regards the trans-Caspian pipeline, which is mainly being supported by players outside the region, this route is still primarily virtual," he said. He said that the obstacles to this project include the fact that the status of the Caspian still has to be regulated, and also the ongoing dispute between Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan over the ownership of a number of fields...

Source: http://www.cdi.org/russia/johnson/2007-150-23.cfm

In related news:

New pipeline projects to boost Europe's energy security - Putin


Projects to build an oil pipeline across the Balkans and a natural gas pipeline under the Black Sea will boost Europe's energy security, the Russian president said on Tuesday. Vladimir Putin, speaking after a meeting with Greek Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis in the Kremlin, said building the South Stream gas pipeline and the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline "will not only bring tangible economic dividends, but will improve energy security on the European continent." Karamanlis arrived in Moscow on December 17 on a two-day visit for talks focusing on energy cooperation. The Russian leader said the sides had discussed a wide range of bilateral measures to expand trade and economic cooperation...

Source: http://en.rian.ru/russia/20071218/93015464.html

Russian Bonds Reinforced

Karamanlis seeks closer ‘strategic’ ties in warm talks with Putin in Moscow

Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis yesterday threw his weight firmly behind Russian President Vladimir Putin during an exceptionally cordial meeting in Moscow where the two leaders agreed to boost bilateral ties, particularly in the crucial energy sector. Karamanlis heaped praise on Putin whom he referred to as «a friend» and congratulated him three times for his landslide victory in parliamentary elections in Russia earlier this month. Karamanlis appeared to plant Greece firmly in Moscow's camp, describing Russia as a «strategic partner.» «The historic ties between our countries are strengthening, particularly in the sphere of energy,» Karamanlis said. His comments followed the signature of a protocol - by Greek, Russian and Bulgarian officials - for the creation of a company to oversee the construction of the much-awaited Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline. Construction is to begin in the summer. Putin and Karamanlis also discussed Greece's involvement in another project: the planned South Stream natural gas pipeline which would bring Russian gas across the Black Sea to Bulgaria and other European countries. The two men are also due to discuss the planned purchase by Greece of more than 400 Russian tanks. Asked to comment on the outlook for defense procurement, Karamanlis was guarded: «We cannot predict how this will develop,» he said. It was unclear whether the thorny issue of Kosovo was discussed in detail (both Russia and Greece oppose plans for its independence from Serbia) but no public statements were made...

Source: http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w.../12/2007_91334

Russian government approves Caspian gas pipeline agreement

Russia's government has approved a Caspian gas pipeline cooperation agreement with Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, a senior government official told the president's conference with the Cabinet on Monday. The natural gas pipeline will run from Turkmenistan along the Caspian coast of Kazakhstan and onto Russia, and will pump 10-20 billion cubic meters of gas to Europe via Russia's pipeline network. Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Naryshkin said President Vladimir Putin had instructed the government to make the most of a planned working visit by Kazakh leader Nursultan Nazarbayev in order to move ahead with the implementation of the project. The deputy premier said the agreement also involved a provision on a feasibility study of the project, the implementation of which will begin in the second half of 2008. The document remains to be ratified. ""The agreement is ready for signing,"" Naryshkin said. Russia, Turkmenistan, and Kazakhstan agreed to build the pipeline in May 2007 and were to finalize it in September, but had failed to agree on the price of supplies...

Source: http://www.tehrantimes.com/index_View.asp?code=158930

Russia unaffected by Nabucco trans-Caspian gas pipe project

A trans-Caspian gas pipeline project bypassing Russia would not hurt its interests or the interests of the country's energy giant Gazprom, a deputy industry and energy minister said on Friday. "That point of view only exists in the minds of the media," Ivan Materov said. The $6 billion pipeline project is expected to link energy-rich Central Asia to Europe through Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Austria. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2009, enabling the pipeline to go on stream in 2012. The official also said that Russia does not regard the Nabucco project as a rival or alternative to the South Stream project, which is designed to carry gas to southern Europe from Russia. He said gas pumped along the Nabucco pipeline would be too expensive and uncompetitive, compared to South Stream...

Source: http://en.rian.ru/russia/20071207/91429186.html

ANKARA'S NABUCCO POLICY ANGERS SOME

Some European energy experts believe that Russia's latest deals with Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan -- which could jeopardize Turkey's policy of becoming an energy route for Caspian oil and gas, bypassing the strategic and busy Bosporus and Dardanelles straits -- should be seen as a serious blow both to Turkey and the EU's aspirations to reduce reliance on Russian gas and energy. The renewed risks of Russia's increased dominance in the Caspian region first surfaced when Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an agreement with Bulgaria and Greece in March for building the Burgas-Alexandroupolis pipeline to carry Russian oil. Then came the news from Turkmenistan early last week that Putin and the region's main energy producers, Turkmenistan's President Gurbangul Berdymukhamedov and Kazakhstan's Nursultan Nazarbayev, shook hands to build a pipeline along the Caspian Sea coast to ship Turkmen natural gas to Western markets via Kazakhstan and Russia. A few days before, Nazarbayev said at a May 10 meeting in the Kazakh capital of Astana with Russian President Putin, that 17 million tons of Kazakh oil might be used in the Burgas-Alexandroupolis project, the Russian Itar Tass news agency reported. All this news obviously represented a blow to both US and European efforts to secure alternatives to Middle East oil and gas that are intended to be independent from Russian influence, such as US-backed Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline, which has started carrying oil to the European markets via Turkey's Ceyhan port in the south. It may be true that the two deals are also expected to reduce Kazakhstan's interest in routes connecting with the BTC pipeline. Russia's deals with Turkmenistan, in particular, also have the potential to affect the Nabucco natural gas pipeline project, which will transport natural gas from Turkey to Austria, via Bulgaria, Romania, and Hungary as it is intended to reduce Europe's dependence on Russian gas...

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Dear reader,

Arevordi will be taking a sabbatical to tend to personal matters. New blog commentaries will henceforth be posted on an irregular basis. The comments board however will continue to be moderated on a regular basis.

The last 20 years or so has also helped me see Russia as the last front against scourges of Westernization, Globalism, American expansionism, Zionism, Islamic extremism and pan-Turkism. I have also come to see Russia as the last hope humanity has for the preservation of classical western civilization, Apostolic Christianity and the traditional nation-state. This compelled me to create this blog in 2010. Immediately, this blog became one of the very few voices in the vastness of cyberia that dared to preach about the dangers of Globalism and the Anglo-American-Jewish alliance, and the only voice preaching the strategic importance of Armenia remaining within Russia's orbit. From about 2010 to 2015 I did monthly, at times weekly, commentaries about Russian-Armenian relations and Eurasian geopolitics in general. It was very difficult for me because I had no assistance from anywhere. The time I put into this blog therefore came at the expense of work and family. But a powerful feeling inside urged me to keep going; and I did. When Armenia joined the EEU and integrated into Russia's military structures a couple of years ago I finally felt a deep sense of relaxation, as if a very heavy burden was lifted off my back. And when Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan reemerged in Armenian politics, I finally felt that my personal mission was accomplished. I therefore felt I could take a step back as I really needed the rest.

Simply put: I have lived to see the institutionalization of Russian-Armenian alliance. Also, I feel more confident now that Armenians are collectively recognizing the strategic importance of Armenia's ties with Russia. Moreover, I feel satisfied knowing that, at least on a subatomic level, I had a hand in the outcome. As a result, I feel a strong sense of mission accomplished. I therefore no longer have the internal urge to continue as in the past. In other words, the motivational force that had propelled me in previous years has been gradually dissipating because I feel that this blog has lived to see the realization of its stated goal.

Going forward, I do not want to write merely for the sake of writing. Also, I do not want to say anything if I have nothing important to say. I feel like I have said everything I needed to say. Henceforth, I will post seasonal commentaries about topics I find important. I will however moderate the blog's comments section on a regular basis; ultimately because I'm interested in what readers of this blog have to say and also because it's through readers here that I am at times made aware of interesting developments. To limit clutter in the comments section, I kindly ask all participants of this blog to please keep comments coherent and strictly relevant to the featured topic of discussion. Moreover, please realize that when there are several anonymous visitors posting comments simultaneously, it becomes very confusing (not to mention extremely annoying) trying to figure out who is who and who said what. If you are here to engage in conversation, make an observation, express an idea or just attack me, I ask you to at least use a moniker to identify yourself.

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