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Turkey’s Black Sea gas field to go online next year

Erdogan reelection Gulf Reuters/Murad Sezer
Erdoğan, who has been in power since 2003, is unlikely to change his unorthodox economic policies

Turkey’s Black Sea gas field is on track to go online next year as promised and work has sped up to connect it to the national infrastructure, president Tayyip Erdogan said.

Addressing a natural gas pipeline opening in the northern Kastamonu province, Erdogan said drilling at nine of the 10 wells in the first phase of the seabed Sakarya gas field was complete.

“Hopefully we’ll start using this gas next year,” Erdogan said via video.

Turkey discovered natural gas off its northern coast in 2020 and since estimated volumes at 540 billion cubic metres.

Turkey built an ‘energy base’ in Sakarya, and it will become a benchmark marketplace for natural gas with the inclusion of domestic supplies, Erdogan said.

“We’re preparing to build an advanced natural gas marketplace where multiple products, multiple contracts come together to form reference prices.”

Erdogan did not mention Russia in his speech.

In recent weeks, Russian president Vladimir Putin has repeated that a natural gas hub could be set up in Turkey fairly quickly, forecasting many European customers would emerge in such a marketplace.

Turkey’s central bank lifted its inflation forecast for the end of 2022 to 65.2 percent from 60.4 percent, governor Sahap Kavcioglu said in October, marking the fourth rise this year.

He conceded that the bank had not been ‘very successful’ in curbing price growth.