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Lloyds List: Shell joins Samsun Ceyhan pipe build

Published: Sep 28, 2006

ROYAL Dutch Shell has joined Italian oil firm Eni to build an oil pipeline across Turkey to take Black Sea oil to the Mediterranean, writes Martyn Wingrove.

The Anglo-Dutch oil major is looking to pump its future Kazakhstan oil production from the Black Sea port of Samsun to the tanker terminal at Ceyhan along the $1.5bn line.

‘We have signed an agreement with Eni and Calik Enerji to investigate the possibility of participating in the development of a pipeline between Samsun and Ceyhan,’ said a Shell spokeswoman.

‘The aim of the project is to provide a convenient and attractive alternative to oil tanker traffic in the Bosporus and Dardanelles Straits.’

The Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline is seen as a bypass of the very busy ship corridor that links the Black Sea and the Aegean Sea, where traffic delays are frequent and long.

Shell and Eni hope the pipeline project will reduce the congestion of tanker traffic and offer an export corridor to allow growing quantities of crude to reach Mediterranean markets.

Both oil companies are partners in the huge Kashagan oil project in the northern Caspian Sea, which promises to be a major source of new oil supplies to the market when it comes on stream by the end of this decade.

It is thought Eni is in discussions with other oil companies planning to increase Kazakh production, including US major Chevron, to farm out stakes in the 550 km pipeline, which may transport 1m barrels per day of crude.

With Kashagan and other field projects in the pipeline, Kazakhstan’s oil output is due to double, which will increase pressure on tanker traffic through the Bosporus unless bypasses are built.

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