The working visit of the President of the Russian Federation V.V.Putin to Samsun, Turkey

November 17, 2005

Vladimir Putin arrived at the port of Samsun on the Black Sea coast in Turkey.

The President of Russia met the Prime Minister of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and the Prime Minister of Italy, Silvio Berlusconi, at the airfield.

The goal of Vladimir Putin's visit to Turkey was to participate, together with the Turkish and Italian heads of state, in the events surrounding the official opening of the Blue Stream Gas Pipeline that crosses the Black Sea.

SAMSUN, TURKEY. Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi participated in the official opening of the Blue Stream Gas Pipeline.

At the gas pipeline's opening ceremony Vladimir Putin thanked people who worked on implementing this major project.

The President of Russia called launching Blue Stream one more step towards creating a common European energy space, strengthening the continent's energy security, and diversifying deliveries of crude energy to general consumers.

Vladimir Putin also talked about the possibility of constructing another branch of the Blue Stream gas pipeline under the Black Sea and establishing additional gas transit structures to deliver gas to southern Italy, southern Europe and to Israel.

The official opening ceremony for the Blue Stream Gas Pipeline that crosses under the Black Sea took place at the Durusu gas heating terminal.

At the terminal, the three heads of state met with Chairman of Gazprom's board of directors, Alexei Miller, acting head of the Turkish company Botas, Riza Ciftci, and head of the Italian ENI group, Paolo Scaroni.

Alexei Miller showed Russian, Turkish and Italian leaders the control room of the Durusu gas heating terminal and a diagram showing the routes along which Russian gas will be exported. The head of Gazprom emphasized that once the Blue Stream project was implemented, risks associated with gas transport were actually reduced to a minimum since gas is directly sent from Russian to Turkish territory.

SAMSUN, TURKEY. A meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi took place.

Members of delegations from all three countries also participated in the talks.

The Minister of Industry and Energy, Viktor Khristenko, said that Russian, Italian and Turkish leaders discussed issues concerning Europe's energy security, including the different possibilities for creating a gas and oil transit system.

After the talks Vladimir Putin had separate private meetings with Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Silvio Berlusconi.