DUESSELDORF/VIENNA, Germany, Jan 28 (Reuters) - Germany's Bayerngas has abandoned plans to help build a pipeline transporting Caspian gas to Europe as the small gas supplier shifts its focus to its home market.
The Azeri gas and oil producing consortium Shah Deniz is expected to choose by mid-2013 whether to transport gas to western Europe via the Nabucco-West pipeline or the rival Trans-Adriatic pipeline (TAP).
Bayerngas had been talking to the consortium since October 2011, but delays, possible cost overshoots and rival pipelines made the plan unattractive, according to some critics.
'We are not continuing the talks (with the Nabucco-West consortium),' a spokesman for the Bavarian company told Reuters on Monday. Bayerngas would instead focus more on investing in pipelines in Germany through its subsidiary Bayernets.
The Nabucco consortium said in a statement the Bayerngas decision would not negatively impact on its future plans.
Nabucco's five shareholders are Austria's OMV AG, Hungary's MOL through its gas pipeline operator FGSZ, Turkey's Botas, BEH of Bulgaria and Romania's Transgaz . Germany's RWE recently pulled out.
'The decision by Bayerngas' new management was due to internal considerations and has no impact on Nabucco which is now in its final stages of development,' Nabucco said in its statement.
It said 50 percent of the pipeline's capacity would be offered to third parties which would allow them to use it without being shareholders.
(Reporting by Tom Kaeckenhoff and Angelika Gruber; Writing by Vera Eckert; Editing by David Cowell) Keywords: NABUCCO/
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