The European Union and Azerbaijan intend to sign a memorandum on cooperation in the energy sector, the agreement, among other things, provides for an increase in gas supplies to 20 billion cubic meters per year by 2027. This is reported by Reuters with reference to a draft document, the signing of which will help the EU reduce dependence on Russian energy resources.
“The parties seek to support bilateral natural gas trade, including through exports to the European Union, via the Southern Gas Corridor, in the amount of at least 20 billion cubic meters of gas annually by 2027 in accordance with commercial feasibility and market demand,” the excerpt agency cites from the document.
At the end of 2021, Azerbaijan supplied 8.2 billion cubic meters of gas to the EU through the Trans-Adriatic gas pipeline, which is the final part of the Southern Gas Corridor (also includes the South Caucasus and Trans-Anatolian gas pipelines). In addition to increasing the volume of supplies, the parties agreed to increase the throughput capacity of existing gas pipelines, reduce their negative environmental impact, as well as increase production in Azerbaijan using advanced technologies that would minimize the carbon footprint.
In addition to the gas sector, the parties discussed expanding cooperation in the field of power generation and electricity supplies, as well as the use of existing transport capacities for the supply of hydrogen, which is especially relevant in light of plans to reduce the use of fossil fuels in the EU after 2030.
After the start of the war in Ukraine, the European Union authorities began to actively look for an alternative to Russian oil and gas. European politicians claim that Moscow is deliberately using gas as pressure - many European countries are heavily dependent on Russian supplies. At the end of 2021, Russia exported 155 billion cubic meters of gas to the EU, and the EU is not able to replace a similar volume of supplies in one year.