9th Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council Ministerial Meeting and 1st Green Energy Advisory Council Ministerial Meeting held in Baku on February 3, continued with plenary sessions on the “Southern Gas Corridor: Expanding Affordable, Stable and Safe Natural Gas Supply” and the “Green Energy: Delivery of Caspian Sea Wind Energy to European Energy Markets”.
Minister of Energy of Azerbaijan, Parviz Shahbazov, while delivering  the inaugural keynote at the ministerial meeting, noted that the establishment of Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council and Green Energy Advisory Council confirms that both natural gas and green energy are a main priority for us. In his speech, the minister, referred to the important role of Azerbaijan as a reliable and strategic partner for regional countries and Europe in energy supply and mentioned that 2023 would be a crucial year for our activities related to the Southern Gas Corridor and transmission of Caspian Sea green energy to Europe: “In 2022 11.4 billion cubic meters gas was supplied from the Southern Gas Corridor to Europe. We need to speed up our decision-making process on investments in infrastructure and upstream, consolidate positions of all stakeholders as soon as possible and take action to expand the corridor through comprehensive diversification to double gas supplies up to 25 billion cubic meters by 2027. Today, the establishment of “green energy” corridor originated from Azerbaijan, is also our key strategic priority. Last December, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Romania and Hungary took a historic step to connect Caspian Sea and Europe with green energy with the political support of the European Commission. At the initial stage, it is considered to transmit 3-4 GW of "green energy" through this route that purports to be the "green energy" corridor of the 21st century. Our cooperation with international energy companies on more than 25 GW of green energy power projects enables Azerbaijan to become a main and reliable partner for Europe in "green energy" and hydrogen supply in the near future”.
Minister of Energy and Natural Resources of Turkey, Fatih Donmez in his speech noted: “Needless to say that TANAP is a solid example of our joint cooperation as the main pillar of the Southern Gas Corridor. This corridor proves that an overall objective may unite countries. All these large-scale  projects are being implemented effectively within close cooperation. Realisation of this corridor and provision of commercial gas flow to Europe is an especially important step to achieve this goal. We need additional reserves and additional source countries to increase gas volumes. In this regard, we are ready to develop cooperation with Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan for the prosperity of our region”.
Minister of Environment and Energy Security of Italy, Pichetto Fratin: “The potential of energy resources in Caspian area is a key element, even in a future perspective, for our energy policies. We hope to see an increase in the capacity of the Southern Gas Corridor in order to supply the EU with at least 20 billion cubic meters per year by 2027 through new long-term supply contracts. We believe it is an important perspective not only for consumers and transit countries, such as Italy and Europe, but also for producer countries”. 
In her remarks, Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Energy Resources at the U.S. Department of State, Laura Lochman underscored how U.S.-Azerbaijani partnership can bolster energy security through regional energy cooperation and the clean energy transition.
Regional Energy Security and Climate Ambassador of the Great Britain, David Moran noted: “We’re proud of the transformative role that bp and other British companies have played in the Southern Gas Corridor and in Azerbaijan’s prosperity, and look forward to this close cooperation continuing as Azerbaijan lays the foundations for a green, future-proof economy.”
Deputy Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, Romeo Mikautadze mentioned: "The Southern Gas Corridor is of special importance for Europe, since it allows diversification of the energy sources, hence supports energy security of the EU member countries and beyond. Apart from this, is has also initiated dynamic processes and partnership of countries located along the corridor and beyond their borders. Georgia is a reliable partner of the Southern Gas Corridor and the project is very important for the country to fulfill the role of a bridge in terms of energy.”
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary, Peter Siarto: “Azerbaijan's importance for Europe has increased due to the severe energy crisis. Increasing the amount of natural gas produced in the South Caucasus is the best option for diversification in the short and medium term. Increased natural gas production in Azerbaijan could play an important role in the energy security of Hungary and Central Europe, but this requires the development of infrastructure in the region, which requires EU support. We Hungarians expect that Azerbaijani gas will contribute to Hungarian energy security as soon as possible”.
Minister of Energy of Romania, Daniel Popescu noted: “Romania’s representation at the highest level in Baku by H.E. Mr. Klaus Iohannis, President of Romania, as well as Mr. Virgil-Daniel Popescu, Minister of Energy, reconfirms the country’s firm commitment to supporting the SGC extension plans. During unprecedented times, further development of such a valuable gas transport infrastructure is of the utmost importance for strengthening the energy security of South-Eastern and Central European states, based on innovation, investment and open dialogue. In this endeavor, Romania will be a reliable partner, to fully be counted upon, for the future development of the Southern Gas Corridor.”  
Minister of Energy of Bulgaria, Rossen Hristov in his speech outlined that global challenges in the energy sector require complex solutions and global efforts. Transborder projects and cooperation became the most effective and efficient way to secure gas supplies in Europe in the face of changed geopolitical environment. Bulgaria and Azerbaijan are partners providing energy security to Europe.  
Secretary General for Energy & Mineral Resources at Ministry for the Environment and Energy of Greece, Alexandra Sdoukou noted: “TAP represents a strategic infrastructure which strengthens the EU’s energy supply diversification. It also serves as the backbone pipeline which facilitates the development of associated grids infrastructure. I would like to underline our support to TAP’s efforts to double its capacity. In the near future, Greece could potentially absorb around 1 billion cubic meters of additional Azerbaijani gas, and of course other markets in Southeast Europe can also take advantage of TAP’s increased capacity.”   
Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Energy of Albania, Ilir Bejtja underlined: “Albania has now the presidency of the Energy Community, for 2023. Our targets for this year are: being the leader country for diversification of the energy production, always based on renewable sources, saving energy through increasing efficiency, and developing gas infrastructure to provide gas for industry and power purposes. Eco friendly energy production will be the objective for Albania.”
According to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Infrastructure and Regional Development of Moldova, Andrei Spinu,  now, more than ever, it is necessary to join our efforts and have closer collaboration in the energy field: “The energy crisis in Moldova and the increases in the price of natural gas in Europe highlighted once again the need to diversify natural gas supply sources. This transmission system spanning six countries contributes to the diversification of energy sources and supplies, including in regions that previously had no access to natural gas”.
Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Capital Investments of Montenegro, Ervin Ibrahimovich said: “In accordance with the European Green Deal and the EU energy policy, we plan further development of the energy sector through green energy transition and decarbonization, increasing the use of energy from renewable sources and improving energy efficiency, as well as building infrastructure facilities to connect with neighboring energy systems. By realizing the Adriatic Ionian gas pipeline, not only Montenegro, but also the whole region would achieve significant benefits.” 
Minister of Mining and Energy of Serbia, Dubravka Djedovic, mentioned: “Serbia is rapidly working to become part of this large value chain that supports energy security and conditions for economic growth. By connecting to the Southern Gas Corridor, Serbia will diversify its supply routes. We have recognized Azerbaijan as one of our key partners in diversifying our gas supply sources, from where we could potentially obtain supplies to meet up to a third of our annual needs. Discussions on the terms of delivery of this energy source are being held in parallel with the construction of the gas interconnection with a capacity of 1.8 billion cubic meters of gas in the direction towards Serbia and which we expect to be finalised this autumn. We expect the first deliveries of gas to arrive at the beginning of 2023, however that also depends on the speed of commercial negotiations by all parties involved, and we hope to achieve maximum efficiency so that gas from Azerbaijan can start flowing in the direction towards Serbia as soon as possible”. 
Director of the Energy Department the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Croatia, Kristina Celic noted: “I would like to emphasize the importance of the Ionian Adriatic pipeline project which is the main reason why I am today in Azerbaijan. This is an example of successful cooperation between the four countries, which will ensure gas supplies from the EU border to Southeast Europe while owing to the Azerbaijani vison of delivering gas to Europe.” 
During “Southern Gas Corridor: Expanding Affordable, Stable and Safe Natural Gas Supply” session, SOCAR, BP, Azerbaijan Gas Supply Company, TANAP, TAP, Asian Development Bank and World Bank representatives presented reports on the Southern Gas Corridor project.  
In the session "Green energy: delivery of Caspian Sea wind energy to the European energy markets”, special emphasis was given to the expansion of cooperation on “green” energy in the framework of Advisory Council. It was mentioned that the “Agreement on a strategic partnership in the field of green energy development and transmission between the Governments of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Romania and Hungary" signed last December with the support of the European Commission, laid the foundation for the cooperation in a quadrilateral format. However, construction of a "green energy" bridge between Caspian Sea and Black Sea, Azerbaijan and Europe requires creation of a broader "international green team". Because, this corridor, as well as the Southern Gas Corridor, will diversify the energy supply and transit routes to the European Union and Southeast European countries. It will get the opportunity of being expanded to more European countries.
The session also covered presentations prepared by BOEMDA, SOCAR, “Masdar”, bp, “ACWA Power” “Fortescue Future Industries”, “WindEurope”, “SolarPower Europe”, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank, European Investment Bank, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Asian Development Bank and World Bank regarding the projects carried out in the field of green energy transition, energy transition investment and market perspectives and renewable energy. 

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