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Expanded gas cooperation in Azerbaijan

August 27, 1998, 01:00 CEST

An agreement on expanded cooperation to develop the gas sector in Azerbaijan has been concluded with the national authorities by the Statoil/BP alliance.

The deal was signed during the run-up to a seminar on Azerbaijan offshore oil and gas developments organised in Stavanger by Norway's Intsok programme for oil industry internationalisation.

"This marks a new milestone in our collaboration to develop the gas sector in
Azerbaijan," said Vitaly Beglyarbekov, deputy head of foreign investment at Azerbaijan's Socar state oil company.

He signed the agreement on behalf of Socar, while Tor Ivar Pedersen - who heads
Statoil's operations in Azerbaijan - did the same for the alliance.

Work by Statoil on issues associated with the Azeri gas sector, initiated in September 1996, yielded a report in April. BP has subsequently become involved as a partner.

The companies expect exploration drilling in the Caspian during coming years to yield large volumes of gas. Under the new deal, Socar, BP and Statoil will collaborate on a work programme to plan the development of Azerbaijan's gas industry.