Having already secured considerable financing from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the World Bank and Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank (AIIB) with $2.5 billion in loans, the multinational Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline project, which will carry gas from Azerbaijan to Europe, is waiting approval from the European Investment Bank (EIB) for a $1.3 billion loan.Saltuk Düzyol, general manager of the Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) project, said: "We are waiting for the European Investment Bank's approval of another $1.3 billion financing package, which will be used by the Southern Gas Corridor and Petroleum Pipeline Corporation [BOTAŞ]. The EBRD's approval of a $500 million financing package for the TANAP will contribute to the completion of the ongoing negotiation process between the EIB and our project partners in a shorter period of time than expected."
Düzyol said that the loans that have been approved so far and are expected to be approved for the project will amount to $3.95 billion, adding that the TANAP's budget has gone down to $7.9 billion, according to the latest calculations. "We have saved approximately $3.8 billion from the projected initial investment cost for the project. Approximately 80 percent of such megaprojects end exceeding time and budget, but we have done quite well in both until now. It has been rarely seen that such a large amount of savings is achieved in such a large-scale project." In addition, more than 13,000 direct jobs have been provided during the busiest period of construction activities.
Düzyol further said that approximately 93 percent of the first stage of the 1,350-kilometer line called Phase 0, which will start from the Turkish-Georgian border and reach Eskişehir, has been completed. Also, the system will start receiving natural gas from the entrance point on the Turkish-Georgian border as of the beginning of next year. All underground and surface facilities that make up the pipeline system will be individually tested in about six months. "I hope natural gas delivery to Turkey will start by the end of June 2018," Düzyol said.Düzyol said that investments in Phase 1, which will extend from Eskişehir to the Greek border and provide natural gas to the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), is expected to be completed by mid-2019. The line will carry natural gas produced in Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz-2 field in the Caspian Sea to Turkey and Europe via the Turkish territory.Emphasizing that the project could be completed in the first quarter of 2020 due to some political and administrative problems, Düzyol said that the natural gas flow to Europe could also start in March 2020, at the earliest.