Georgia strikes Azeri, Iranian gas deal

  • Elisabeth Gheorghe
  • 25.4.2017 09:49

In reaching an agreement to import gas from Azerbaijan, Georgia has both removed the need to purchase any additional Russian gas in 2017 and also temporarily deflected criticism concerning a recent deal with Russia's Gazprom. Georgian Energy Minister Kakha Kaladze announced the new deal on 7 April. With the switch taking immediate effect, supplementary Iranian imports were revealed on 22 April to begin in May. 

As Russian gas is exported to Armenia, Georgia, a transit state, receives 10% of the gas supply instead of transit fees. Georgia acquired 100 million cubic meters of Russian gas between January and March 2017. According to the new contract, 2017’s share will be compensated in cash and gas, and only financially from 2018 onwards. The move is an attempt to reduce reliance on Russian gas, although Kaladze faces allegations of undermining Georgian energy security as well as political interests. Georgia's 4% of Russian imports is comparably low to Europe. Kaladze has reportedly not eliminated future deals with Gazprom.

About author: Elisabeth Gheorghe

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