BAKU, May 16 (Reuters) - Azeri gas exports from the first stage of its giant Shah Deniz field fell by 6.4 percent to 2.391 billion cubic metres (bcm) in the first four months of this year compared with the same period in 2017, the State Statistics Committee said on Wednesday.
Gas from Shah Deniz I is exported through the South Caucasus pipeline.
Export volumes from Shah Deniz I operated by an international consortium led by BP were 7.314 bcm in 2017.
Azerbaijan’s gas exports through all pipelines totalled 8.112 bcm in January-April this year.
Azerbaijan plans to start first commercial deliveries of natural gas to Turkey from the second stage of the Shah Deniz field from June 30 this year.
The European Union is trying to reduce its dependence on Russian gas by developing the so-called Southern Gas Corridor, which is expected to bring about 16 bcm of gas a year to Europe by 2020.
The gas would come from the Shah Deniz II field via the 1,850 km the Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) through Turkey, the South Caucasus pipeline extension through Georgia and the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) to Greece, Albania and Italy. (Reporting by Nailia Bagirova; Writing by Margarita Antidze; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)