Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the prime minister of Turkey, used his appearance in Abu Dhabi yesterday at the World Future Energy Summit to promote the ambitious project, which could supply gas to Europe through a Turkish hook-up with the proposed Nabucco pipeline.

Mr Erdogan said the Qatar-Turkey pipeline project was “important” for his country, and “will provide remarkable opportunities for Gulf countries”.

He also described last year’s signing of an inter-governmental agreement on the Nabucco pipeline as the year’s “most significant development” for Turkey’s energy strategy.

The transit agreement between five EU states and Turkey cleared the way for a final investment decision on the EU-backed project to reduce European dependence on Russian gas.

Several Central Asian and Middle East gas producers have recently expressed greater interest in supplying gas to Nabucco, although the project’s backers have yet to conclude any firm agreements.

Turkey has long sought to establish itself as a hub for energy flowing from Asia and the Middle East to Europe. The idea has gained traction with the EU in the past two years, as European concerns over energy security have intensified due to recurring spats that have threatened to disrupt westward flows of Russian oil and gas.

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