Japan's Inpex to Test BTC Pipeline with a Batch of Kashagan Crude
A Japanese oil company, Inpex Corporation, will send a test batch of 7,000 tonnes of Kashagan crude from Kazakhstan through the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline this month, the pipeline's operator, KazTransOil, said on Friday, March 10, CAN reported.
Kashagan crude is typically transported through the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC), which crosses Russia.
However, last year's numerous interruptions to the CPC following Russia's conflict with the West over Ukraine prompted firms to seek alternative routes.
During an investor conference call, Abai Beisembayev, KazTransOil's head of transportation, revealed that Inpex's crude is already being transported to the port of Aktau by railroad.
The port projects to export 1.5 million tonnes of crude to Baku this year from Tengiz, another giant Kazakh oilfield that formerly only used the CPC pipeline. According to the reports, the start of these shipments was postponed due to the destructive earthquake that struck Turkey.
The move is significant since it marks a potential shift in transport methods for Kashagan crude, one of Kazakhstan's largest oilfields, accounting for approximately a third of the country's total crude production.
The 1,770-kilometer BTC pipeline jointly held by BP, SOCAR, ENI, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Inpex, Total, and ONGC runs from Baku in Azerbaijan to the Mediterranean port of Ceyhan in Turkey, is capable of transporting up to one million barrels of crude per day.