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Energy summit agrees to extend Ukrainian-Polish pipeline to bypass Russia

KRAKOW (Poland), May 11 (RIA Novosti) - The informal energy meeting of developing countries in Krakow agreed Friday to extend the existing Odessa-Brody pipeline to Polish terminals and refining centers and create a corridor to bring Central Asian energy to Europe bypassing Russia.

The presidents of Poland Lech Kaczynski, Azerbaijan's Ilham Aliyev, Georgia's Mikheil Saakaashvili, Lithuania's Valdas Adamkus, and Ukraine's Viktor Yushchenko, as well as Kazakh Deputy Energy Minister Lyazzat Kiinov, signed a resolution highlighting the importance of energy security and endorsing the extension of the Ukrainian-Polish Odessa-Brody oil pipeline to the Polish port of Gdansk and refining center of Plock.

The countries also agreed to set up a joint venture to implement joint projects, such as an energy corridor from Central Asia to Central Europe through the South Caucasus.

Kaczynski said the next such summit would take place in October in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius.

"The energy summit was a great idea," Saakaashvili said, describing the result as "a promising start, a first step."

Yushchenko highlighted that the forum was not directed against third countries and that the developing countries had finally "started to coordinate their energy efforts."

He expressed satisfaction over the "political decision to extend" the Odessa-Brody pipeline which, for want of supplies and access to a refining capacity, currently mainly transports Russian oil to the Black Sea port of Odessa.

Aliyev described the summit as a sign of "the growing role of regional cooperation." He said Azerbaijan was interested in the prospect of selling its huge oil and gas reserves to Europe.

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