Gazprom planning June start for Turkish Stream offshore section

Turkish Stream pipeline

Gazprom is planning to start work on the Black Sea section of the Turkish Stream pipeline early next month, even though it has yet to agree terms with Ankara and Athens to run it on through Turkish and Greek territories to the northern Balkans and eventually western Europe, board member  Oleg Aksyutin announced last week. Saipem, the Italian company that had originally been commissioned to lay the aborted South Stream, will also construct the underwater section of the pipeline, while Germany’s Europipe has confirmed that it is to  resume production of the pipe’s  sections.  
If it actually comes to fruition, the Turkish Stream Pipeline  will run 660km along the original South Stream route before stretching a further 250km along a new corridor into western Turkey; but despite giving the pipeline the go-ahead, Russia has  yet to sign intergovernmental agreements with either Turkey or Greece.
Gazprom’s decision to push ahead unilaterally is largely driven by financial pressures; it is believed to be losing about €25m a month while the two Saipem pipe-laying  vessels that it contracted to build the doomed South Stream project idle off the Bulgarian Black Sea port and coastal resort of Varna.
Gazprom will also be under pressure from Moscow to counter EU plans to replace Russian gas supplies with those from the Caspian Sea via the Trans Anatolian Pipeline  (TANAP) which is scheduled to come on stream by 2019.

Source: rbth