Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline

Read more about the pipeline spanning three countries from the Caspian Sea to the Mediterranean coast

Bakı-Tbilisi-Ceyhan

Key facts

  • The pipeline length is 1768km in total length.
  • The diameter of the pipeline is 42 inches.
  • BTC’s throughput capacity is currently 1.2 million barrels per day.
  • The BTC pipeline facilities include: Eight pump stations (two in Azerbaijan, two in Georgia, four in Turkey),one pressure reduction station, two intermediate pigging stations, 101 block valves
  • The BTC passes over 1,500 river and 13 seismically active fault crossings and climbs to a high point of 2,800 metres before returning to sea level at Ceyhan.
Baku-Tbilisi Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline carries oil from the Azeri-Chirag-Deepwater Gunashli (ACG) field and condensate from Shah Deniz across Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. It links Sangachal terminal on the shores of the Caspian Sea to Ceyhan marine terminal on the Turkish Mediterranean coast. In addition, crude oil from Turkmenistan continues to be transported via the pipeline. Starting in October 2013, we have also resumed transportation of some volumes of Tengiz crude oil from Kazakhstan through the BTC pipeline.

The pipeline that became operational in June 2006 was built by the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline company (BTC Co) operated by BP. 

The pipeline buried along its entire length is 1768km in total length: 443km in Azerbaijan, 249km in Georgia, and 1,076km in Turkey  The Azerbaijan and Georgia sections of the pipeline are operated by BP on behalf of its shareholders in BTC Co. while the Turkish section is operated by BOTAS International Limited (BIL).

The diameter of the pipeline is 42 inches throughout most of Azerbaijan and Turkey. In Georgia the pipeline diameter is 46 inches. The pipeline diameter reduces to 34-inches for the last downhill section to the Ceyhan Marine Terminal in Turkey.

Throughput capacity – one million barrels per day from March 2006 to March 2009. Since March 2009 it has been expanded to 1.2 million barrels per day by using drag reducing agents (DRAs).

During the first quarter of 2016, BTC spent approximately $29 million in operating expenditure and $11 million in capital expenditure.  

Since June 2006 when BTC pipeline became operational, it has carried a total of about 2.43 billion barrels (around 324 million tonnes) of crude oil loaded on 3,194 tankers and sent to world markets.  

In the first quarter of 2016, BTC exported around 67 million barrels (about 9 million tonnes) of crude oil loaded on 82 tankers at Ceyhan.

On 11 August 2014, BTC celebrated the loading  of the 2 billionth barrel of oil at the Ceyhan terminal in Turkey.

The BTC pipeline passes through 13 districts in Azerbaijan: Garadagh, Absheron, Hajigabul, Agsu, Kurdamir, Ujar, Agdash, Yevlakh, Goranboy, Samukh, Shemkir, Tovuz, Agstafa; 7 in Georgia and 9 in Turkey. 

It passes over 1,500 river and 13 seismically active fault crossings and climbs to a high point of 2,800 metres before returning to sea level at Ceyhan.