January 27, 2021

9:00-10:30 am Eastern Standard Time


On December 31, Azerbaijan started commercial natural gas exports to Europe via the U.S.-backed Southern Gas Corridor, helping the region to diversify supplies away from Russia.

Completion of the $40 billion Southern Gas Corridor marked an important milestone for U.S. diplomacy and European energy security as it was the culmination of several years of work with both public and private sectors, including different governments across the Caspian region, multinational energy companies, and several U.S. presidential administrations.

Alongside its vast contribution to the energy security of Europe, the completion of the Southern Gas Corridor also comes at a time of changing energy markets and increased focus on climate change.

On January 27, the Caspian Policy Center will bring together senior policy officials, corporate executives, and leading energy policy experts to discuss the completion of the Southern Gas Corridor project, how it fits with the evolving picture of the energy industry, and the possible next steps for the Caucasus and Central Asia’s energy market.

This virtual event will be moderated by Ambassador (ret.) Robert F. Cekuta, Advisory Board Member at the Caspian Policy Center, and include keynote remarks by Francis R. Fannon, Former Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Energy Resources at the U.S Department of State.

Preliminary Agenda


9:00 – 9:05  Welcome remarks – Efgan Nifti, Chief Executive Officer, Caspian Policy Center

9:05 – 9:30 Ambassadorial remarks

  • H.E. Elin Suleymanov, Ambassador of Azerbaijan to the United States
  • H.E. Floreta Faber, Ambassador of Albania to the United States
  • H.E. David Bakradze, Ambassador of Georgia to the United States
  • Sinan Ertay, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of Turkey to the United States

9:30 – 9:40  Keynote remarks

  • Francis Fannon, Former Assistant Secretary for Energy Resources, U.S. Department of State

9:40 – 10:25  Panel discussion and Q&A session

  • Ambassador (ret.) Richard Morningstar, Director and Chairman of the Global Energy Center, Atlantic Council
  • Elshad Nassirov, Vice-President for Investment and Marketing, SOCAR
  • Robert Scher, Head of International Affairs, BP America


  •  Ambassador (ret.) Robert F. Cekuta, Advisory Board Member, Caspian Policy Center

10:25 – 10:30 Closing remarks