Russia has proposed building a major new pipeline intended to carry gas to customers in both Turkey and the European Union. The project, dubbed Turkish Stream, is controversial for two interconnected reasons. Firstly, it is intended to help Gazprom fulfil its stated intention of terminating gas exports to Europe via Ukraine by the end of 2019. Secondly, it is far from clear that customers in the European Union would accept delivery of gas at Turkey’s border with Greece in place of current deliveries to locations in Central Europe.

For these reasons, the issue of what Gazprom is actually likely to do in terms of implementing Turkish Stream, as opposed to what Russian officials have declared they intend to do, is of profound significance for European energy security. But Turkish Stream is also important for a third reason, its potential impact on the new pipelines—collectively known as the Southern Gas Corridor—currently being developed to supply Azerbaijani gas to Europe.

Related Experts: John M. Roberts