Greek section of TAP to be completed in November

, SEE Energy News

Trans-Adriatic (TAP) pipeline Project Director for Greece Katerina Papalexandri said that the construction of the Greek section of the gas pipeline will be completed in November.

Papalexandri said that tests of the pipeline will be carried out by mid-2019, while the start of its commercial operation is expected in 2020. Last month, TAP AG said that pipes for the onshore section of TAP along 80 % of its route through Greece and Albania have been welded.

Since the beginning of 2018, The European Investment Bank (EIB) announced that it has approved 1.5 million euros loan for financing the construction of TAP gas pipeline, while the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said that it will allocate loans worth up to 1.2 billion euros for the project in 2018.

TAP project envisages 878 km long pipeline that will connect to the Trans-Anatolian (TANAP) near the Turkish-Greek border and cross Greece, Albania and Adriatic Sea before reaching its final destination in Italy. Current shareholders of TAP AG are British Petroleum (20 %), Azeri state-owned SOCAR (20 %), Italian Snam (20 %), Belgian Fluxys (19 %), Spanish Enagas (16 %) and Swiss Axpo with 5 % of the shares. The initial capacity of the pipeline is 10 billion cubic meters of gas per year, with an option to expand the capacity to 20 billion cubic meters. The cost of the project was initially estimated at some 6 billion euros, but in 2016 CEO of TAP AG Ian Bradshaw confirmed that the construction should cost 4.5 million euros. The construction of the Greek section of the pipeline was launched on 17 May 2016, while construction works on the Albanian section started on 30 Sep-tember same year. In late January 2018, TAP AG said that the project is 65 % completed.