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Caucasus/Central Asia: U.S. Hosts Caspian Oil Conference

Washington, 18 November 1997 (RFE/RL) - Officials from the Caucasus and Central Asia will meet with international investors and senior U.S. government officials in Washington tomorrow at a conference on developing Caspian Sea oil pipelines.

U.S. Energy Secretary Frederico Pena is scheduled to welcome an estimated 300 participants to the two-day meeting. The list includes energy officials from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Russia and Turkmenistan, as well as representatives from Iran and Turkey.

The organizers of the conference are the private Cambridge Energy Research Associates, the U.S.-Russia Business Council and the U.S. -Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce. The organizers say the purpose of the meetings is to confront the difficult political issues surrounding the construction of pipelines that experts say could carry thousands of millions of dollars worth of Caspian oil to market.