Caspian Convention and Perspective of Turkmenistan’s Gas Export to Europe

Negotiations on the Trans-Caspian Gas Pipeline (TCGP) project have been ongoing since the 1990s. Because of China’s dominant share in Turkmenistan’s gas exports and Ashgabat’s economic problems, the country needs a new route for gas diversification to ease its export dependence on China, as well as Russia. Thus far, the TCGP project has received numerous indications of political commitment from the actors involved in the project’s realization at bilateral and trilateral levels. However, the fate of pipeline remains obscure because of numerous political, technical, and financial problems. The recent Caspian Convention raised some optimism for the prospects of TCGP, though there are issues that remain to be addressed in this regard. This article examines the prospects for the TCGP project, principally by analyzing the positions of the EU, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, and Russia in terms of dependent variables (to what extent does the TCGP depend on these actors’ influence on the project’s implementation?) and independent variables (how will these actors be influenced by the project’s realization?), and presents prospective scenarios for trans-Caspian gas flow to Europe.

Authors: Ilgar Gurbanov