Monday, July 13, 2009

Nabucco signed

Today's signing of the Nabucco gas transit agreement by Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Turkey is a first step along the way to the construction of a pipeline that will ship gas from the Caspian to central Europe via Turkey, bypassing Russia. But there are some imponderables: if suppliers of gas for the pipeline include not only Central Asian states include Iran, Iraq and Russia, there are likely to be political problems - and the Central Asian states which originally agreed to be suppliers are coming under pressure from Moscow, which is prepared to go to almost any lengths to prevent the pipeline being completed. Another factor is Georgia - President Saakashvili's presence at the signing ceremony in Ankara underlines the EU' leadership's view of Georgia as a natural transit country.

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