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Baku ready to resume talks with Iran, Russia on uniting energy systems

13 November 2015 16:05 (UTC+04:00)
Baku ready to resume talks with Iran, Russia on uniting energy systems

By Aynur Karimova

Azerbaijan has confirmed its interest and readiness for resuming meetings as part of the trilateral working group on uniting the energy systems of Azerbaijan, Iran and Russia.

This was announced by Natig Abbasov, Azerbaijan's Deputy Energy Minister, on November 12.

Abbasov, who was commenting on Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak’s statement on the need to resume the tripartite talks on the issue, told Trend that the issue of establishing the North-South energy corridor has always been on the agenda.

"In this regard, a trilateral meeting was held in Baku in 2014,” Abbasov said. “Both Iran and Russia have always shown interest in this project. As a transit country, Azerbaijan is also very interested in this project."

He further noted that Azerbaijan is technically ready for the project implementation in the north and in the south.

"The country has the necessary infrastructure that allows receiving and transmitting electricity,” Abbasov said. “There is necessary capacity at the Derbent-Yashma transmission line and the Imishli-Parsabad transmission line. We have the parallel operation of energy systems with Russia because there has been a single system since the Soviet period. There is also a contract signed between Azerenergy with Russian Inter RAO. It is still impossible to create a parallel mode of operation with Iran due to the difference in frequencies. Iran’s investments will be required to create such a regime. We have all technical opportunities to transfer energy from Russia to Iran and vice versa."

Earlier, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak confirmed the interest in uniting the energy systems with Azerbaijan and Iran. Novak made this statement at the 12th meeting of the permanent Russian-Iranian commission on trade and economic cooperation.

“We also confirm the interest in continuing to examine the issue of linking the energy systems of Russia, Iran and Azerbaijan, and we consider it reasonable to resume the tripartite working group,” he added.

Azerbaijan's power system, with an export potential of six billion kilowatt hours, is the most powerful in the South Caucasus. The country has not been purchasing electricity from abroad, being that it has been a net exporter since 2008. The country’s power capacity has increased by 2,300 megawatts over the last 10 years after commissioning new energy generating facilities.

There are 7,200 megawatts of installed capacity of Azerbaijan’s power supply system, which now produces about 24 billion kilowatt hours annually, allowing Azerbaijan to export 2.1 billion kilowatt hours every year.

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Aynur Karimova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Aynur_Karimova

Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz

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