Azerbaijan moves to reduce dependence on oil exports

By: Maksim Tsukrov

The resource extracting countries now face the need for better technology and more cost-effective production following the world oil price decline.

The oil refining process and obtaining of a final product with its further sale on the world markets are at the forefront in this situation. That is why, Azerbaijan is taking all necessary actions to establish a facility that will supply the end products to world markets.

Plans are underway to build of a new big petrochemical complex (OGPC) near Baku, which includes an oil refinery and a gas processing plant, as well as a petrochemical facility.

The implementation of this project is not in question, even amid low oil prices, as the management of SOCAR (State Oil Company of Azerbaijan) has repeatedly stressed that the financing and the implementation of strategic projects will not be suspended.

SOCAR and US Fluor Limited have signed a contract making Fluor the contractor for OGPC construction project management. This testifies to the importance and feasibility of the project.

It should be stressed that OGPC is a beneficial project in many ways. Besides enriching the economy, the construction and the activity of such a large complex in the future envisage job creation and this is of great social importance. The location of this complex, 60 km from the capital Baku, ensures a close watch on environmental issues.

The selection of a contractor to manage such a project is a very important point. It is no coincidence that the tender proposals were put forward by four leading world companies that specialize in such activities. Those companies desire to participate meant the project’s prospects were beyond doubt.

The introduction of advanced technologies and experience of the leading world companies is also a very important aspect of this project, as the higher is the quality of the OGPC products, the higher is the probability of selling them at a profitable price, which again increases the economic feasibility.

Meanwhile, SOCAR will be able to successfully utilize the experience gained during the project’s realization in third countries as well.

Moreover, SOCAR intends to deal with not only the extraction and processing of oil and gas, but also rendering engineering service, and has recently signed of a contract with another US company, KBR, under which the two companies will create a joint venture for engineering services.

SOCAR’s president, Rovnag Abdullayev says such a joint venture will contribute to the creation of a global-scale engineering service company in Azerbaijan.

In the not to distant future, SOCAR will be able to provide the all the necessary services for the design and construction services for the projects related to geological exploration, production and refining of oil, its transportation, re-refining of oil and petroleum products in third countries.

Azerbaijan, together with foreign partners, is taking all the necessary steps to reduce dependence on conventional exports of oil, and contribute to the creation of the high-tech production in the country.

SOURCE: Azer News