Azerbaijan temporarily suspends natural gas deliveries to Russia

Jan. 17, 2014 at 8:20 AM

BAKU, Azerbaijan, Jan. 17 (UPI) -- The State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan confirmed the transportation of natural gas to Russia was temporarily suspended because of border construction projects.

SOCAR verified media reports this week that construction projects at various highway sites near the border with Russia intersected with a natural gas pipeline, causing the disruption.

"Considering the state importance of the project, technological conditions were changed; operating pressure was reduced to 12 atmospheres due to safety conditions," SOCAR said in a statement Thursday. "Therefore, gas transportation to Russia was temporarily suspended."

The region's Trend news service first reported the disruption Wednesday.

SOCAR offered no estimate for when the pipeline would return to service or how much natural gas was involved.

A 2010 contract between the parties calls on Azerbaijan to deliver more than 70 billion cubic feet of natural gas per year, but Azerbaijan was short of that last total year, Trend reported.

Last week, Russian oil company Transneft said it would suspend deliveries through the Baku-Novorossiysk oil pipeline because Azerbaijan hadn't signed the necessary agreements for oil transit.

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