Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan are key partners for the European Union in the Eastern Partnership Program and the Central Asian Strategy, with which the EU wishes to deepen relations, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said.
"We share a strong interest in the long-term security and diversification of our energy supply and demand. I will therefore make the case for the realization of the Southern Gas Corridor, which will directly bring gas from the Caspian region to European consumers. I am sure that together we will create the necessary conditions for this strategic initiative to take place", Barroso noted in a statement on Wednesday.
EU Commission President José Manuel Barroso, accompanied by Commissioner for Energy Gunther Oettinger, will travel to Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan from 13-15 January.
He will hold meetings with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Turkmen President Gurbangulu Berdymukhammedov to discuss the full scope of relations between the European Union and their respective nations and in particular energy issues.
President Barroso will sign a Joint Declaration on the Establishment of the Southern Corridor with President Aliyev in Baku on Jan.13. The Presidents will also agree a Joint Declaration on the EU-Azerbaijan Partnership for Modernization, which will support political and economic reforms in Azerbaijan./Trend/