The opening of the STAR Oil Refinery in Turkey last week embarked a new bright page in the relations between the two brotherly nations -- Turkey and Azerbaijan.
The opening ceremony of the STAR Refinery took place in Turkish city of Izmir on October 19. The refinery was founded on October 25, 2011 with participation of the Azerbaijani and Turkish presidents.
Azerbaijan’s direct investment in the construction of the STAR Refinery in Turkey is of particular importance as the largest foreign direct investment in Turkey’s history.
After the completion of all projects in Turkey, investments of Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR in the Turkish economy will reach $19.5 billion.
STAR, worth $6.3 billion will produce diesel, aviation fuel, naphtha, xylene and other products for the Turkish domestic market. The annual production capacity of the plant is 4.8 million tons of diesel fuel, 1.6 million tons of naphtha and 1.6 million tons of aviation fuel.
The opening of the STAR Refinery further strengthens the bonds of brotherhood between the two countries and re-launches energy and transport routes on the map of Eurasia.
Taking into account the fact that Turkish economy is going through difficult times, the projects of SOCAR are very helpful.
In general, the STAR Refinery will reduce the current account deficit of the balance of payments in Turkey by $1.5 billion and will make a significant contribution to the solution of the import substitution issue in the field of petrochemical products that is urgent for the country.
The refinery is capable of producing five million tons of diesel fuel, which will allow Turkey to reduce imports to 40 percent. In addition, the level of imports of liquefied gas will drop to 70 percent. The plant will produce 1.6 million tons of aviation fuel and will fully meet Turkey’s need for this product. Depending on the price of oil, the STAR Refinery will annually form a volume of trade in the amount of $6-8 billion.
The STAR Refinery will increase the oil refining capacity in Turkey, which now reaches 28.1 million tons, by 33 percent, and enable to save $1.5 billion in imports of refined petroleum products.
In addition, STAR means for Turkey the entry to regional markets, the markets of European Union, particularly Southern Europe. The project strengthens the competitiveness of the Turkish economy, because SOCAR’s investments are made not only in the primary sector, but also in the deep processing sector.
The refinery’s activities will be mutually beneficial and will bring great benefits to the investor country, that is, Azerbaijan.
So, SOCAR, investing in such large projects of international importance, strengthens its image as a transnational company and a serious investor. SOCAR, thus, gets access to European markets with high-tech products. The project will allow Azerbaijan to receive dividends in tens of millions of dollars in the short term, and the numbers can reach hundreds of millions of dollars in the medium term.
Turkey and Azerbaijan are active participants in the process of regional cooperation. Both countries effectively use their economic and energy capabilities, as well as the geopolitical position to expand bilateral and regional cooperation.
At the same time, expanding cooperation and strategic partnership between the two countries have become an indicator of stability in the region.
Noteworthy, Turkey and Azerbaijan have gained good experience in bilateral cooperation in the implementation of large-scale projects of international importance, which are well known in the region and the world.
These are the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline, the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum gas pipeline, TANAP, the Southern Gas Corridor, the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway the significance of which is of great importance for advancing the economic interests of Azerbaijan and Turkey in the region and the world. Along with the fact that all these mega-projects bring huge profits to the countries, they also play important role in maintaining stability in the region.
All projects initiated by Azerbaijan and Turkey are implemented successfully and serve further development and well-being of two peoples. In this context, the launch of the Star Refinery makes it safe to say that Azerbaijan and Turkey successfully achieve all their goals.
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz