Turkish Quake Hinders Baku Ceyhan Construction Plans

LONDON (Itar-Tass)–The construction of the proposed Baku-Ceyhan pipeline may be postponed for several years–due to the 7.4 magnitude earthquake in Turkey–an Amoco representative told the Caspian agency Tuesday.

"Turkish officials have assessed the earthquake damage at $30 billion… At this rate Ankara may barely be able to make its $2.4 billion payment share in the pipeline construction," the Amoco official added.

The pipeline envisions connecting Baku to the Turkish port city of Ceyhan on the Mediterranean–via Georgia. In the past the consortium of Western oil companies in Azerbaijan has called the feasibility of the pipeline into question–given the massive costs associated with the construction and maintenance of the pipeline.

The governmen’s of Turkey–Azerbaijan and the US have all advocated for the construction of the pipeline.

The Amoco representative also pointed out that discussions in Washington by Turkish and Azeri groups promoting the Baku-Ceyhan idea continued "in an atmosphere of inertia," since the representatives from Baku and Ankara have realized that their proposal is not sound.

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