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Russia joins energy hands with Azerbaijan

Aug. 14, 2013 at 7:16 AM

BAKU, Azerbaijan, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- Russian energy company Rosneft said it will form a joint venture with its Azeri counterparts for upstream oil and natural gas development.

Rosneft President Igor Sechin traveled to Azerbaijan with Russian President Vladimir Putin to discuss energy and broader multilateral ties. Rosneft said it reached a deal for "full-fledged" energy cooperation with the State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan Republic.

"Rosneft and SOCAR will form a joint venture on parity basis to cooperate in certain upstream oil and gas projects in various countries, including Russia and Azerbaijan," the Russian company said in a Tuesday statement. "The companies also agreed to cooperate in marketing and trading operations for hydrocarbons and petroleum products as well as jointly operate certain infrastructure facilities, such as pipelines and terminals."

The European Union has worked to secure natural gas from Azerbaijan to break the Russian grip on the region's energy sector. The Trans-Adriatic pipeline would deliver 560 billion feet of Azeri natural gas per year to the European market by 2018.

Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reports Azerbaijan delivered nearly 53 billion cubic feet of natural gas to Russia last year.

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