Nabucco Gas Pipeline International GmbH announced Monday the launch of the open season process for booking capacity on the pipeline planned from Turkey.
"As development of the Nabucco project continues, we are pleased to be able to announce the achievement of this highly significant milestone," Nabucco Chief Executive Officer Reinhard Mitschek said from Vienna.
Last week, the BP-led consortium managing the Shah Deniz natural gas field offshore Azerbaijan said it started vetting Nabucco and the rival Trans-Adriatic Pipeline for delivery options to Europe. A decision is expected next month.
Both projects are part of the Southern Corridor, a network of gas transit options meant to bypass Russian sources supplying the European energy sector. Europe gets about 25 percent of its gas from Russia with most of that shipped through Soviet-era pipelines in Ukraine.
The European Union said last week it recognized that Ukraine was making progress in energy security by updating its gas transit system and through diversification strategies.