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AZERBAIJAN-GAZPROM AGREEMENT PUTS NABUCCO IN JEOPARDY


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#1 DominO

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Posted 16 July 2009 - 08:19 PM

AZERBAIJAN-GAZPROM AGREEMENT PUTS NABUCCO IN JEOPARDY

Today's Zaman
July 16 2009
Turkey

Russian gas company Gazprom signed a deal with State Oil Company of
the Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) in Baku last week in connection with
the first phase of the Shah Deniz gas field to transfer 500 million
cubic meters of gas to Europe under the auspices of Gazprom. Seen as
a potential supplier for the Nabucco gas pipeline, Baku's step raised
some questions regarding Nabucco's gas supply problem.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's visit to the Azerbaijani capital
of Baku last week, this time accompanied by Russian businessman Alexei
Miller, the CEO of Gazprom, Russia's largest company and the biggest
gas company in the world, was part of efforts to secure Baku's gas. The
gas is also coveted by the EU-backed $11 billion Nabucco project, a
gas pipeline project that is envisioned to transport primarily Caspian
Sea gas to Europe through Turkey, bypassing Russia. Gazprom's CEO
Miller and Rövnaq Abdullayev, the head of SOCAR, signed an agreement
to transfer 500 million cubic meters of gas from the rich Shah Deniz
gas field starting in January of next year. Russian President Medvedev
and Azerbaijani President İlham Aliyev labeled the agreement a huge
step forward in energy policy and bilateral relations.

There is speculation that the deal is part of Russia's effort to
control all of Europe's energy routes and make the Nabucco project
redundant when considering the gas oversupply of South Stream, a
Russian-orchestrated gas pipeline aiming to transfer Caspian gas
via the Black Sea to Eastern Europe. However, President Medvedev
said their motives are solely based on economic, not political,
interest. Miller said they are looking forward to getting special
privileges in the second phase of the Shah Deniz gas field, which will
be inevitable unless other companies offer more attractive deals to
Azerbaijan. Although the current deal only allows 500 million cubic
meters of gas to be sold to Gazprom, the company foresees annual
increases in supplies to Russia in the future.

Although the Nabucco pipeline's sources of gas are still to be decided,
the project has been seen as one of the primary actions to counter the
difficulties raised by Russia's harsh and strict energy policies. The
EU is not a partner in the Nabucco project, but it has great interest
in keeping it safe and out of Russia's control. In the meantime,
Russia is planning to establish the rival South Stream gas pipeline.

Commenting on the rivalry between Nabucco and South Stream, Shirvani
Abdullayev, Russia's Alfa Bank's top oil and gas analyst, told The
Associated Press that giving Gazprom priority for the Shah Deniz gas
field would spell the end for Europe's Nabucco project. "Nabucco was
designed to use Shah Deniz gas," he said. "Now it is left without
the source of gas." Abdullayev said it was "unrealistic to think"
that South Stream and Nabucco could coexist. "The market does not
need so much gas," he said.

Ferruh Demirmen, an independent energy analyst based in Texas,
told Today's Zaman that "Azerbaijan sent a message to Turkey and to
the West by signing a contract with Russia." He continued, saying,
"The first gas supply for Nabucco will be from Shah Deniz-2. Nabucco's
future is in question as Shah Deniz-2's gas went to Russia."

Also speculating on the aftermath of the agreement on the Nabucco
project, Demirmen said, "It is undeniable that with Shah Deniz-2's
gas stream to Russia, Nabucco will be adversely influenced." Demirmen
also claimed that this agreement would "force" the other partners in
the Shah Deniz Consortium to act the same way as SOCAR. "Although
as a partner country, SOCAR has only a 10 percent share of the gas
consortium, according to the Production Sharing Agreement," Demirmen
said, "SOCAR will get the rights for a significant portion of the gas
and sell it to Russia. This situation will also push other partners
to sell their shares of gas to Russia."

Azerbaijan, undoubtedly, also plans to use the agreement in its foreign
policy. The long protracted conflict over the disputed territory
of Nagorno-Karabakh, an Azerbaijani territory currently controlled
by Armenian military forces, has been Azerbaijan's primary foreign
policy challenge for nearly two decades. In his interview with Today's
Zaman, Demirmen said: "Azerbaijan plans to use its gas reserves in
its foreign policy with this agreement, too. Russia, throughout the
history of gas trade with Europe, has also used its gas policy as a
geopolitical tool. This agreement shows that Azerbaijan has allied
itself with Russia. Azerbaijan's primary message to the West is about
its Nagorno-Karabakh problem."

Sami Sevinc, a member of the Turkish Industrialists and Businessmen's
Association's (TUSİAD) Energy Working Group, told Today's Zaman that
"Turkey still produces 60 percent of its electricity from gas. If
Turkey gets gas through Gazprom and not directly from Azerbaijan,
it will be a losing situation for Turkey." At a Strategic Cooperation
Conference in Baku in September of last year there was great support
for the Nabucco project. "Azerbaijan is not giving up on the Nabucco
project," Azerbaijani Industry and Energy Minister Natiq Aliyev had
said, "This is a project that has a future."

Sohbet Karbuz, the head of the oil and natural gas department at the
Union of Mediterranean Energy Companies (OME), told Today's Zaman
that "the details of Azerbaijan's agreement with Gazprom are not
yet clear. An annual 500 million cubic meters of gas does not really
have importance. What's important is Shah Deniz's second phase. There
was a short 'gas crisis' between Russia and Turkmenistan, and thus
Russia's agreement with Azerbaijan also sends a warning alarm to
Turkmenistan. However, Russia cannot give up Turkmenistan. For
the South Stream [pipeline] Russia needs Turkmen gas." Speaking
optimistically about Azerbaijan's intention not to cooperate with
Nabucco, Karbuz said: "Right now, the most reasonable deal is to
send gas to Russia as there is a real gas pipeline. However, as the
fate of Nabucco is not clear, Azerbaijan, I believe, will not become
involved in large-scale agreements with Russia".

In his interview with Today's Zaman, Mert Bilgin, a professor
at Bahce~_ehir University, said: "Azerbaijan's political
goal is about Nagorno-Karabakh and the limits of compromise in
Turkey-Armenia talks. If Russia supports Azerbaijan's cause to keep
the Nagorno-Karabakh region within Azerbaijan's territory with a
largely autonomous nature, then Azerbaijan may increase the gas
supply to Russia. If Turkey makes solving this problem a priority,
the normalization of relations with Armenia, for whatever goals and
real intentions, will not be welcomed in Azerbaijan, and Russia's
regional influence will increase."

To end the discussions on the issue, Azerbaijani President İlham
Aliyev, in a Monday speech at Chatham House in London, said they have
enough oil to sell to various parties.



#2 hosank

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 01:01 AM

this is so cool..finally russia exposed for what it is:
nothing more than power/oil hungry medler

#3 Yervant1

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 08:49 AM

QUOTE (hosank @ Jul 17 2009, 03:01 AM)
this is so cool..finally russia exposed for what it is:
nothing more than power/oil hungry medler

By no means I'm a defender of Russia or care for them, but isn't the west doing the same thing? Like supporting the baboons for their oil?
It's time we learned that interests matter 100%, the rest is all salad dressings. wink.gif

#4 DominO

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 09:41 AM

QUOTE (hosank @ Jul 17 2009, 03:01 AM)
this is so cool..finally russia exposed for what it is:
nothing more than power/oil hungry medler


Its good news for us, we need Azerbaijan isolated in the East.

But I agree, Russia is doing everything to be the only supplier, it bought the Armenian side of the Iranian-Armenian pipeline project, reducing its diameter, so that it could not be used for exportation, something which would have given some geopolitical importance to Armenia.

#5 MosJan

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 10:31 AM

PRESIDENT SERZH SARGSYAN PAYS VISIT TO MOSCOW

President Serzh Sargsyan pays two-day working visit to Moscow tomorrow, Presidents Cabinet reports.

According to the source the President will have a meeting the same day with the President of Azerbaijan Ilhaam Aliev to hold negotiations over the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution.

It is supposed that on 18 July the Presidents of Armenia, Russia and Azerbaijan will have a joint meeting.

#6 MosJan

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 10:32 AM

sranist lav hot chi galis
mez hamar sa lav chi
vorqan azeri russ kap@ lavana etqan russ@ jnshum k@kortsadri Artsaxi vra, Arji @nkerutyun !!!

#7 DominO

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 10:39 AM

QUOTE (Ծիրա
@ Jul 17 2009, 12:32 PM)
sranist lav hot chi galis
mez hamar sa lav chi
vorqan azeri russ kap@ lavana etqan russ@ jnshum k@kortsadri Artsaxi vra, Arji @nkerutyun !!!


Yeah, but if Azeri sell their oil to the Russians, its the promoters of the Nabbuco project and the West which will have no interest in backing Azerbaijan anymore. All those claimed security think tanks will stop pulling their durty nouse in our matters.

#8 Yervant1

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 10:43 AM

No matter who the baboons sell their oil to, we get screwed in the middle.

#9 DominO

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 10:45 AM

QUOTE (Yervant1 @ Jul 17 2009, 12:43 PM)
No matter who the baboons sell their oil to, we get screwed in the middle.


We can get screwed and screwed, but they won't have an inch of Artsakh. Now, who is screwed? smile.gif

#10 Yervant1

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 10:49 AM

QUOTE (DominO @ Jul 17 2009, 12:45 PM)
We can get screwed and screwed, but they won't have an inch of Artsakh. Now, who is screwed? smile.gif

Are you saying if they sell it to the Russians, then Russia will not force Armenia into concessions regarding Artsakh?

#11 DominO

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 11:15 AM

QUOTE (Yervant1 @ Jul 17 2009, 12:49 PM)
Are you saying if they sell it to the Russians, then Russia will not force Armenia into concessions regarding Artsakh?


What concession? The Azeri are using their cheap tactics to influence the result of the future negociations, they won't have later any problem claiming the contract with Gazprom dead (never trust an Azeri contract). Until now they were not able as they wanted to use their oil to bargin, they now are threatning the Europeans and waiting something in exchange from Russia. The thing is they can't win in both fronts, they have to decide, either Russia or Europe. But it will be harder to convince Russia.

The Azeri fear was to sell its oil to Russia, Armenia having good relations with Turkey. The first step is under way.

Edited by DominO, 17 July 2009 - 11:20 AM.


#12 Yervant1

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 11:26 AM

QUOTE (DominO @ Jul 17 2009, 01:15 PM)
What concession? The Azeri are using their cheap tactics to influence the result of the future negociations, they won't have later any problem claiming the contract with Gazprom dead (never trust an Azeri contract). Until now they were not able as they wanted to use their oil to bargin, they now are threatning the Europeans and waiting something in exchange from Russia. The thing is they can't win in both fronts, they have to decide, either Russia or Europe. But it will be harder to convince Russia.

The Azeri fear was to sell its oil to Russia, Armenia having good relations with Turkey. The first step is under way.

Let's hope that by trying to play both sides against each other they lose both sides.

#13 MosJan

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 12:17 PM

rus@ HAyastani ardyunaberutyan yev energyai mets mais tern e iysor, gaz hosanq .... yev yerb tsankana HAyastan@ kam gaz chi unena kam el electoenergya kam el yerkus@ irar het, ch@hashvats vor russakan zinvorn e Hayastani sahmmanerin kangnats, iynpes or yerb yev inch asi HAystan@ pit katari urish iyl@entranq chi unena....

#14 MosJan

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 12:17 PM

mnats vrastan@ - yete rus@ vrastanin el tsnnki beri - vayn yekel tarel e Hayastanin yev Artsaxtsun

#15 DominO

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Posted 18 July 2009 - 10:11 AM

POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC ROUTES OF NABUCCO
Karine Ter-Sahakyan

PanARMENIAN.Net
16.07.2009 GMT+04:00

The essential thing to do is to bring the pipeline into Turkey, and
there are two ways to do it: to bring it from Turkmenistan through
Azerbaijan and Georgia, or from Iran through Armenia.

On July 13 the long-awaited agreement on beginning the realization
of the Nabucco gas pipeline was signed in Ankara, which immediately
gave rise to numerous commentaries and predictions by all interested
parties. Quite naturally, the gloomiest forecasts apropos of the
realization of the project were made by Russia. But it's fairly
explicable, because in case of exploitation of the gas pipe, Moscow
loses a very and dreadfully important lever of pressure on Europe and
the Caucasus, which in no way pleases her. Accustomed to the policy
of threats, Russian authorities will do everything in their power to
hinder the realization of Nabucco.

/PanARMENIAN.Net/ It is necessary to note that Russia has specific
levers to hit the target. Moscow thinks she somehow solved the
problem by buying up all the Azerbaijani gas and promising Baku a
spice-cake in the form of the Karabakh conflict "regulation". Not by
chance, indeed, were the Madrid principles, whose essence was long
a widely known secret, promulgated especially these days. However,
hardly can Azerbaijan seriously believe that the resolution will be
quite pleasing for Baku. As a matter of fact, Russia is not the one
to make resolutions, no matter how much she seeks it, because she
definitely does not match the role of a mediator-peacemaker. The same
spice-cake is stored up also for Armenia, but with some reservations
and conditions.

However, Moscow forgets one essential matter: the isolation of Iran is
not eternal, changes in the region occur very frequently and who can
assert that tomorrow Iran will not be allowed to the gas pipe? She
will be allowed for one simple reason: the Azerbaijani gas, even if
it is completely pumped into Nabucco, is not sufficient anyway. So,
the Turkmen or Iranian gas will be necessary. Iran, which holds the
second place in the world with its gas deposits, can easily fill up
Nabucco. As far as the Turkmen gas is concerned, Teheran can simply
buy it up and deliver it to China and the Far East countries, which
would be both cheaper and faster.

Actually, everything at present depends on the choice of the gas
pipe route. The essential thing to do is to bring the pipeline into
Turkey, and there are two ways to do it: either to bring it from
Turkmenistan through Azerbaijan and Georgia, or from Iran through
Armenia. The first route is political and economic, while the second
is purely economic and profitable. To all appearances, the story of
the oil pipeline Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan repeats itself: it would have
been economically more profitable for it to pass through Armenia,
but Baku with the support of Turkey and Georgia did everything in her
power to obstruct the realization of this project. However, things
are much more complicated with Nabucco. First, it is longer and,
hence, more expensive. Second, it is essential for Europe, because the
latter needs to finally reject the delivery of the Russian gas. Well,
for the same purposes Nabucco is also necessary to the region. In any
event Russia will not be able to control the gas pipe, irrespective
of which country it passes through, because she will have to manage
to close the valve in two countries simultaneously, and no one has yet
succeeded in doing it. Sure, Moscow will try to impede the construction
process and to dictate conditions. Moreover, she will do it by way of
Armenia, which in the West is considered to be the chief pro-Russian
country in the South Caucasus. And again the Iranian factor comes to
the fore. It is possible to come to an agreement with three Caucasian
countries (by hook or by crook), but Iran, who claims to the role of
the regional power, will definitely carry out her own policy. The
USA still says that Nabucco can be filled with the Russian gas,
but never with the Iranian. However, it is said only now, but as
we have already noted, there is one more possible scenario. After
the presidential elections there began cleanings on the very top in
Iran, and Leader of the Iranian nuclear program Gholamreza Aghazadeh,
who supported main oppositionist of the country Mir-Hossein Mousavi,
retired. Moreover, if Europe has to choose between Iran and Russia as
gas suppliers, most likely she will give preference to Iran: in spite
of the "irreconcilability of ayatollahs" it is always possible reach
understanding with Teheran. And though it is also possible to reach
an agreement with Moscow, it is too costly. It's no less difficult
to negotiate with Iran or Iraq, who are ready to contribute their
mite into Nabucco, but there will clearly be no blackmail on their
part. Although, who knows? But, in any event, under equal conditions,
the East gives preference to expediency and not to instantaneous
political or economic gains.

As far as the two supposed branches are concerned, here, unfortunately,
almost everything depends on Russia, or, to be more accurate, on her
power in resolving her regional problems. Nabucco may become that
point of no return, after which Moscow will have great difficulty in
controlling not only the conflict situation in the Caucasus, but also
the relations with seemingly friendly countries: Iran, Azerbaijan
and Armenia. Georgia, naturally, is not counted - relations with it
have been damaged for long. In a broader sense, the project is yet
beneficial far only for Turkey as the basic transit country. Armenia
can earn dividends only if she becomes the second transit county. But
truly serious geopolitical changes are necessary for this.



#16 hosank

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 08:17 AM

QUOTE
Are you saying if they sell it to the Russians, then Russia will not force Armenia into concessions regarding Artsakh?
DominO


YES YES YES YES...

look, let me give a quick rundown on armeno/russian relations in the last 200 years:..
throughout the 19th century, the russian empire (as part of a wider great game with great britain, and in the context of the wider european balance of power, which consisted of checking any advance by one power, by all the others..) has been wooing the armenians (in the same way as they wooed balkan slavs) in the ottoman empire, because of our orthodox/christian and european identity, as part of a ploy to secure a foodhold in the "sick man of europe" the ottoman empire. many times over, the russian tzar declared himself the "defender of christianity in the ottoman empire"..and so on...

when the russian army entered the caucasus, it fought a 30 year war against north caucasian tribes, and (previously independent) georgia..annexing and abolishing the georgian church. for armenia, russia's presence in the region was somewhat of a relief from the persian empire, as finally a christian/eastern european patron state was here to protect them from the "hordes of islamic asiatics"...this is where i must point out that the armenian church was also annexed to the russian orthodox one..(in the same way, the abkhaz church was forced into the russian orthodox one in 1997)

this was part of a wider conflict between the ottomans and russia which lead to at least 5 wars, including the crimean war...and for a short period, russian dominance on north eastern anatolia (till they got all communified and left)..in 1917.

throughout the 20th century, under a new name, the blosheviks continued this scheme in a new form, of divide and conquer. in this light, artsax and naxichevan was given to "azerbaijan" (or south tatarstan as i like to clall it)...as well as a portion of southern georgia...kars and ararat were given to turkey, as well as the georgian parts of ardahan and artvin..(this was in the hopes that turkey would join their brothers, the azeris in a larger soviet union...at the same time, of course, the us was funding an anti-communist movement in turkey as well...)

in the meantime, all armenian intellectualism was supressed, by either exiling artists, writers, poets and others to siberia..or outright killing them...leaving us with this creative blackhole we live with today..
over a million armenians ended up growing up outside the caucasus (russia/kazakhstan...)...not to mention soviet attempts at russification of our nation: changing the alphabet...the huge number of russian loan words in common usage...russian signs, russian school programmes etc..

this of course was not only happening in armenia, but around the soviet-sphere. the reason armenians today supress this in their collective memory is because we are so poised to believe that russia is a benefactor, and that we can just pretend all the bad stuff didn't happen..while we listen to our dadiks and babiks talking about how great the brejnev STAGNATION was...."kordz kar, dun uneink, uraz eink"...ble ble ble..

...
anyway back to the point

the current situation between armenia, azerbaijan and russia in 2009 is EXACTLY the same as in 1993. russia helped azerbaijan till 1993, because it had no interest in armenia, aside from a border with turkey (which , at the time, shevernadze georgia could also secure) azerbaijan on the other hand was traditionally one of the major oil producing regions of the Union, and was thus quite a deal more important to russia..russia only "switched sides" in 1993, when it was evident that Armenia was winning. in the early 90's, experts were already talking about a new great game, this time for caspian oil resources. now that azerbaijan is agreeing to build a new pipeline through russia, which in a way is a symbol of closening ties between the lord in baku and the emperor in moscow...which, though they may have seemed to be shallow (with azerbaijan's "raprochement" towards the USA..s oil companies...) ..never actually were...

but ya, as previously mentionned, russia, through several lackeys here in armenia has found many other ways to keep the USSR still functionning without calling it such. some examples: in order to "settle our national debt to russia"...putin took over control of armenia's Mars micro-tech factory, bought up the hrasdan power plant, created "armrusgasprom" bought our half of the gas pipeline to iran (which was conceived as part of armenia's (and georgia's) attempt to break away from russias energy hegemony)...now owns armenia's national railway service, and both our mobile companies.

so, for those of us who think we gained independence in 1991, ...i'm affraid it may not be so clear..

and from what i see on the ground here, i honestly fear for the future. the more russia drifts into autocracy, the faster armenia follows.

...
anyway point is simple..
after the war in ossetia, aliyev was in baku talking about the "historic business ties between the ancient azeris and russians"...and signing another deal.
lavrov, (an armenian) after recognising the independence of the 2 georgian republics, went to baku to assure aliyev that this was not the case for artsax.
...
now that the deal has been signed for the new pipeline
medvedev issues a statement claiming that aliyevs "speech" about artsax was "correct"

...
anyway hopefully now youtube won't be as flooded with "armenia and russia orthodox brothers for life" videos..because medvedev and putin do not worship christ, they worship stalin, lenin and marx

wakeup armenians...stop with the "we need the backing of major powers" mentality




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