ArmInfo.As a result of the war in Karabakh, the pipeline map of the region is unlikely to be changed. This opinion was expressed in an interview with ArmInfo by Doctor of Political Sciences, Head of the Energy Security Institute Vahe Davtyan.
Firstly, he believes, the bulk of large infrastructure projects have already been implemented, only the Transcapian gas pipeline project remains on paper, which, if implemented, will receive the same logistics solutions as Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan or the Southern Gas Corridor, i.e. will pass through Georgia. However, the expert notes, despite the convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea signed in 2018, the implementation of this project is traditionally blocked by Iran, which has not yet ratified the convention, as well as by Russia.
Secondly, it is naive to believe that new geopolitical realities will create the basis for Armenia's integration into the pipeline and transport-logistics communications of the region. The transport and energy blockade of Armenia will continue, since at the moment only the armed phase of the conflict is over, and then with a big stretch. The war has entered the stage of hybrid confrontation, and here Ankara's goal is to expand the border with Nakhijevan, hence Tehran's emphasized preventive behavior.
According to Davtyan, the project for the construction of the Igdir-Nakhichevan railway, as well as the agreement reached on the construction of a gas pipeline with the same logistics in order to reduce Nakhijevan's energy dependence on Iranian supplies, are part of the Turkish geostrategy. The involvement of Armenia in the energy transport communications of the region will mean the formation of a safety cushion for it in the form of foreign capital, attracted in new infrastructure projects. And in this sense, Pashinyan's statements about unblocking communications and the possibility of establishing a railway connection with Iran through Nakhijevan are nothing more than economic myth-making.
At the same time, the analyst noted, not everything is so cloudless for Azerbaijan. Of course, the Trans- Anatolian gas pipeline has already been launched, the next in turn in 2021 is the Trans-Adriatic, but there are two problems that must be taken into account. Firstly, this gas transportation corridor has too little throughput: at best, it is able to reach 10 billion cubic meters per year, while the annual consumption in Europe reaches 500 billion cubic meters. In general, the TAP and TANAP Complete Pipeline Connections are nothing more than a bubble inflated by the anti-Russian lobby in the EU. It has no diversification potential. Secondly, Azerbaijani gas is not competitive in terms of its price. After the April shock, gas prices in Europe fell sharply, reaching $ 40-50 per 1,000 cubic meters. Today, as a result of the renewal of the OPEC + deal, oil prices have somewhat stabilized, which also affected spot gas prices in Europe. At present, the price of natural gas at European hubs reaches $ 150-160, which also inflicts a serious blow on Azerbaijan's foreign gas transportation policy. Taking into account the prime cost of Azeri gas produced in the Caspian Sea, as well as transportation costs, the price for it already in Italy will reach up to $ 250. ... In the current situation, Davtyan notes, Turkey remains the key sales market for Azerbaijani gas, but not everything is smooth here either. True, over the past year and a half, Azerbaijan has succeeded in ousting Russian gas from the Turkish market, but since August, Gazprom has been restoring its positions again, taking the leading position in Turkey in gas supplies. This trend continues, increasingly worrying the Azerbaijani establishment.