22 Oct 2009 18:15

Kazakhstan to join Samsun-Ceyhan project

ST.PETERSBURG. Oct 22 (Interfax) - Kazakhstan has expressed readiness to join the Samsun-Ceyhan oil pipeline project, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has said.

"Our Kazak colleagues said they were ready to pump oil into this pipeline system jointly," Putin said in a video link-up with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan, which was also joined by Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, now in St.Petersburg.

Putin said he had held preliminary talks with Kazakh colleagues on their role in the project [to lay an oil pipeline, Samsun-Ceyhan, across Turkey from the Black Sea to the coast of the Mediterranean Sea]. "The Kazakh president is in Turkey on a visit now, and you, too, were planning to meet him," Putin told Erdogan.

"A corporate agreement was signed in Italy a couple of days ago between a Turkish company, Italy's Eni and Russia's Rosneft and Transneft on the start of their cooperation under this large-scale pan-European project," he said.

"I think we could forge a major international project, which will definitely play a significant role in ensuring energy security in Europe, and will improve the situation in the world energy markets," Putin said.

The Russian prime minister also thanked the Turkish leadership for the go-ahead to the construction of a new gas pipeline on the floor of the Black Sea from Russia to Bulgaria across Turkey's exclusive economic zone.