Feb 13, 2013 Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday that construction of the Trans-Anatolian natural gas pipeline project (TANAP) could begin as early as this year. The Trans-Anatolian Pipeline will enhance Turkey’s position as a leader of energy security in Europe, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said. Turkish interests have a 20% shareholding in the project, with the majority share held by SOCAR, Azerbaijan’s state oil and gas company. The 1,240-mile TANAP pipeline is designed to carry natural gas from the Shah Deniz field in the Azeri waters of the Caspian Sea through Turkey to its western borders at Greece or Bulgaria. There it may link up with Nabucco West, a European Union-backed project. In June, 2012 the Shah Deniz consortium of chose Nabucco West as the single pipeline option for the potential export of Shah Deniz Stage 2 gas to Central Europe. The final decision is expected in this year.