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Monday, July 12, 1999 Published at 20:39 GMT 21:39 UK


World: Asia-Pacific

Major gas find in Azerbaijan


International oil companies have announced the discovery of large gas reserves in Azerbaijan's sector of the Caspian Sea, which could turn the country into a major gas exporter.

An oil executive Andrew Hopwood of BP Amoco said preliminary estimates suggested the gas field could hold at least four-hundred billion cubic metres and was a world-class discovery. Azerbaijan's leading geologist, Khoshbakt Yusifzade, predicted the field could ultimately be shown to contain as much as one-trillion cubic metres. The Azeri president, Heydar Aliyev has ordered the development of a pipeline to carry the gas to world markets, especially Turkey, where gas demand is expected to rise sharply in the next ten years.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service



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