Azeri firm to deliver gas with local boss

Azeri firm to deliver gas with local boss

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Azeri firm to deliver gas with local boss

Azeri oil company Socar is set to partner with a Turkish businessman. REUTERS photo

The Azerbaijani state oil company, Socar, is to partner up with Turkish businessman Remzi Gür on local market commercial operations by establishing three companies, the head of the company’s Turkey unit has said.

“Our cooperation with Remzi Gür will bring synergy in our downstream – oil product sales, marketing and distribution – and local operations,” Socar Turkey President Kenan Yavuz told daily Hürriyet. 

Gür, a businessman known as a close friend and financial sponsor of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and Socar have founded three companies. Socar Turkey’s natural gas distribution, fuel and oil products distribution and electricity production and investment companies will come at the second stage, following the completion of refinery investment as part of the company’s market integration plans. Socar announced Feb. 14 that it would sign a preliminary deal with a group of lenders within a month to help finance a $4 billion Turkish refinery. In December Socar selected a consortium of Tecnicas Reunidas, Saipem, GS Engineering & Construction and Itochu to build the refinery in Aliağa on the Aegean coast in western Turkey. Construction is expected to be completed by 2016.

“One of our aims is to realize the vertical integration that begins with raw material and finishes with final consumption. While any opportunity will be considered, it’s too early to talk about concrete projects,” Yavuz said.Gür is the owner of the giant clothing chain Ramsey, which is also the sponsor of the British football team Liverpool. 

When Gür’s pledge to buy Turkish Adabank with his Gulf-based partner G-Capital for $75 million was declined by the state’s banking supervision agency last September, curiosity was aroused in the public as to whether Gür’s close ties with the prime minister had been shattered.