The European Commission (EU), on Monday, struck a deal with Azerbaijan to double natural gas imports by 2027.
The agreement was made after European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen visited Baku in an attempt to reduce the European Union’s dependence on Russian gas.
According to Reuters, the deal between both countries will increase energy supply into the bloc through the Southern Gas Corridor pipeline.
Azerbaijan began exporting natural gas to Europe through the Trans Adriatic Pipeline at the end of 2020. In 2021, the pipeline delivered 8 billion cubic meters of gas to the EU. It is expected that Azerbaijan’s gas imports to the EU would cross 20 billion cubic meters by 2027.
“Today, with this new memorandum of understanding, we are opening a new chapter in our energy cooperation with Azerbaijan, a key partner in our efforts to move away from Russian fossil fuels,” EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said at a joint news conference with Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev post the signing ceremony in Baku, capital of Azerbaijan. She added, “Azerbaijan is a crucial energy partner for us that has always been reliable.”
The Azeri gas imports will rise to 12bcm next year, which “will help compensate for cuts in supplies of Russian gas and contribute significantly to Europe’s security of supply,” she added.