BTC to pump $1 bn into Turkish coffers

Oil pipeline project (BTC), which will transport Caspian Sea oil to world markets, has already begun to bear fruit, earning Turkey over $400 million since its opening in July of last year.

BTC to pump $1 bn into Turkish coffers

The Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) oil pipeline project, which will transportCaspian Sea oil to world markets, has already begun to bear fruit, earning Turkey over$400 million since its opening in July of last year.

Salih Paþaoðlu, general manager of Botaþ International Limited (BIL), theTurkish Pipeline Company, said the target for 2007 is $1 billion from thepipeline and that the 2008 goal is 60 percent more. The target is to carry 1.6million barrels of oil per day through the pipeline.

BIL gets 35 cents per barrel transported while the Treasury takes in 20cents per barrel. The Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO), moreover, gets a6.5 percent share.

With estimates of 584 million barrels of oil to be transported throughthe pipeline, the revenues of BIL and the Treasury will be $204.4 million and$116.8 million, respectively. TPAO's profits will exceed $700 million.

Paþaoðlu said it was upsetting that workers' salaries and allegations ofhiring workers based on political inclination was more discussed than BIL'sachievements. He said the employee privileges of BIL workers are exaggerated.

Paþaoðlu emphasized that the 550 staff members working for BIL are notcovered by public servant regulations and pointed out that the main contractorwas the multinational BTC.CO.

"We are subcontractors. They carry the work out in Azerbaijan and Georgia," he said. "Weare a company established abroad -- that's why purchases and hiring do not haveto meet Turkish legislation."

Paþaoðlu said the BTC pipeline would reach full capacity in a month. He saidwhen full capacity was reached, 1 million barrels of oil would be transportedeach day and that BIL's annual revenue would be $120 million.

Paþaoðlu emphasized they were keeping up with technological advancesto increase daily capacity up to 1.6 million barrels and said additionalpumping stations would be constructed.

Paþaoðlu also provided information about the measures taken forpipeline security.

The 1760-kilometer-long BTC oil pipeline is being monitored constantlythrough high-tech tracking units in special control rooms in Baku and Ceyhan. He said the gendarmerie hadestablished 10 additional patrol stations and that 34 teams were taking part inthe patrols.

BIL will also purchase helicopters and conduct air surveillance along the1,000-kilometer-long pipeline. There have been 13 attempts at theft on thepipeline since it was officially inaugurated in July of last year. Othersecurity measures, such as specially equipped mounted patrols, which are beingused in the US,are under discussion.

Paþaoðlu said the BTC pipeline will contribute to Turkey becoming an energy hubbetween East and West. "With the completion of the Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline,Ceyhan will become an energy center," he said.

"With the refineries that are going to be built, crude oil can beshipped or processed here. There may be a new oil mixture called 'Brent Ceyhan'in the near future," Paþaoðlu said.

He emphasized they were waiting for Iraq to maintain stability foractivating the Iraq-Ceyhan oil pipeline and added that they may establish anoil exchange after that. Meanwhile, Paþaoðlu said they may bid, as BIL, for theoperating rights of the Samsun-Ceyhan oil pipeline.

Today's Zaman

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16
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