Karatzas & Partners acted as Greek legal advisers on the successful completion of TAP’s EUR 3.9 billion project financing, the largest project finance agreed for a European infrastructure project in 2018.
The financing was provided by the EBRD and the EIB, along with a group of 17 commercial banks, including Bank of China, BNP Paribas, Societe Generale, and UniCredit. Part of the financing is covered by the bpifrance, Euler Hermes, and Sace export credit agencies. According to Karatzas & Partners, "the project raised EUR 3765 million in third party senior debt with a door-to-door tenor of 16.5 years, combining commercial debt along with development financial institutions and export credit agencies-related financing.
TAP, which will transport up to 10 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year from the Shah Deniz II field in Azerbaijan to Italy, is the final part of a USD 40 billion project called the Southern Gas Corridor, will transport gas from Central Asia to Western Europe. It is described as a cornerstone of the European Union’s energy security policy to wean the bloc off Russian gas supplies. With the first delivery of gas to Europe expected in 2020, TAP will be the first non-Russian gas pipeline to supply Europe since the Medgaz link, which started deliveries from Algeria to Spain in 2011.