15 September 2017

By Kalina Oroschakoff | @MaKaOro | With thanks to Marion Solletty and Sara Stefanini.

Originally published on POLITICO Pro Morning Energy and Environment.

NGOs are stepping up their protests against the Southern Gas Corridor after the ‘Azerbaijani Laundromat’ money laundering scandal broke earlier this month. The European Investment Bank’s (EIB’s) board is set to discuss a proposed loan of €1 billion for the Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) at a meeting on September 19, while the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development’s board is expected to decide whether to grant the project a $500 million loan on October 18. TANAP is a key part of the wider Southern Gas Corridor, which would deliver gas from Azerbaijan to Italy in an effort to help diversify the EU’s gas supplies and bolster its security of supply.

— Dear board of directors: “The EIB should scrutinize all loans for the Southern Gas Corridor for the sake of its own reputation,” the NGOs Counter Balance and CEE Bankwatch said in a briefing sent to the bank’s board this week. Granting a loan to TANAP would raise concerns about human rights violations, support for authoritarian regimes, the “correctness” of the EU’s argument for energy diversification and the project’s economic viability, they said.


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