Britain's BP starts work Wednesday on a $2.9 billion oil pipeline from the land-locked Caspian Sea to Turkey that will put crude from the region in reach of world markets. The BP-led Baku-Ceyhan project includes Norway's Statoil, U.S. Unocal, Turkish TPAO, Japan's Itochu, Italy's ENI, French TotalFinaElf, Azeri SOCAR and Saudi Arabia Delta Hess.
The 1,700-kilometer link from Azerbaijan became feasible after the oil major found more oil in the Caspian.
Russia abandoned its original hostility to the U.S.-backed project, which bypasses Russian territory, after the Sept. 11 attacks.
When the project completed, it will run from Baku through Georgia to the Turkish Mediterranean port of Ceyhan.
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