BOTAŞ-ExxonMobil LNG Agreement

Turkey aims to become a significant gas hub in the region, stand out as an exporter, and effectively manage the gas it provides.
With recent developments in the region, Turkey has entered a transition process towards modern energy systems and neo-transit methods.
Turkey's largest trading partner in LNG imports is the United States, followed by Algeria, France, and Russia, respectively.


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On May 8, 2024, following a visit by Turkish Energy Minister Alparslan Bayraktar and senior executives to the United States (US), a 10-year LNG agreement was signed between BOTAŞ and ExxonMobil.[1] This development is considered one of the steps taken to diversify Turkey’s energy security.

Turkey imports 99% of its natural gas supply, and the continuity of supply frequently comes up in discussions due to potential geopolitical tensions.[2] With a supply-demand volume of 51 billion cubic meters (bcm), Turkey has begun transitioning to modern energy systems and neo-transit methods in light of recent regional developments. Among the steps taken by Turkey to ensure supply security are the expiration of a 10 bcm gas contract with Iran in 2026 and another import contract with Russia for 16 bcm via the Blue Stream pipeline in 2028.[3]

In the near future, it is possible to expect a reduction in the use of existing pipelines and a shift primarily towards liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects. Additionally, according to the Energy Market Regulatory Authority (EPDK) data, the United States is Turkey’s largest trading partner for LNG imports, followed by Algeria, France, and Russia. As of February 2024, Turkey’s LNG imports from all these countries except Russia have decreased compared to the same period of the previous year. During the same period, LNG imports from Russia increased by more than 33%. In November 2023, Turkey extended its LNG import agreement with Algeria, which has been ongoing since 1988, for another three years. The Turkish Ministry of Energy announced that Turkey will continue to receive 4.4 billion cubic meters of LNG annually from Algeria until 2027.[4]

BOTAŞ has concluded negotiations with ExxonMobil for an agreement worth approximately 1.1 billion dollars for 2.5 million tons (3.45 bcm) of LNG. The agreement is expected to last for 10 years, with provisions for expansion to ensure the continuity of projects. Turkey has seven international natural gas pipelines, five LNG facilities (three floating storage and regasification units (FSRU) and two underground natural gas storage facilities).

Turkey aims to become a significant gas hub in the region, to stand out as an exporter, and to effectively manage the gas it supplies.[5] Turkish Energy Minister Alparslan Bayraktar has stated that, following discussions with his US counterpart Jennifer Granholm, they have initiated the Energy and Climate Dialogue Program between the two countries. Minister Bayraktar remarked, “I believe this partnership will contribute to further cooperation between the energy sectors of the two countries and to ensuring energy supply security.”[7]

Moreover, it is possible to say that with the European Union countries emerging as a significant energy market, especially after the Ukraine-Russia Crisis, the potential values of Turkey and other stakeholder countries will increase. The United States’ significant LNG collaborations with Greece and simultaneous efforts to expand regional cooperation with Turkey could either pave the way for a new chapter between the two countries or lead to increased geopolitical competition.

Turkey primarily completes its infrastructure projects with its own capabilities and expands its capacity in the field of gas. On the other hand, Greece’s expanding energy-based close alliance with the United States is noteworthy. Another significant point is the increased collaboration with Exxon on LNG without any signaling of contact with Russia regarding gas following the expiration of contracts.

LNG and other modern energy systems are changing global geopolitics and dismantling the asymmetrical theory of energy. Countries with necessary infrastructure are now becoming exporters of the final product, alongside importing gas in its raw form. Increasing geopolitical tensions, along with supply-demand imbalances, lead to an increase in storage capacity, potentially creating an oversupply situation in the future concerning the supply.[7]

Global actors, especially EU member states, have made their energy security fragile by making unplanned and disjointed transitions regarding supply-demand security before the Ukraine-Russia Crisis. Even if today, there is a reversal of this mistake with the reactivation of some base-load power plants, sudden and disjointed steps taken in LNG could lead to a repetition of this mistake.

[1] “Turkey signs long-term LNG deal with ExxonMobil.”, Reuters,, (Access Date: 08.05.2024).

[2] “Doğalgaz”, T.C. Enerji ve Tabii Kaynaklar Bakanlığı,,544%20milyar%20m3’t, (Access Date: 08.05.2024).

[3] “Türkiye Doğal Gaz Piyasası”, Petform,, (Access Date: 08.05.2024). 

[4] “BOTAŞ-ExxonMobil: Türkiye’nin LNG anlaşması neden önemli?”, BBC,, (Access Date: 09.05.2024).

[5] “Türkiye’s BOTAS inks LNG trade deal with ExxonMobil in US.”, AA Energy,, (Access Date: 09.05.2024).

[6] “Bayraktar: LNG ticareti ABD ile ilişkileri gülendirecek”, Enerji Günlüğü,, (Access Date: 10.05.2024).

[7] “Küresel piyasalarda 2025’te LNG’de arz fazlası oluşabilir.”, Bloomberg,, (Access Date: 02.05.2024).

Ömer Faruk PEKGÖZ
Ömer Faruk PEKGÖZ
Gazi Üniversitesi-Enerji Sistemleri Mühendisliği

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