(QHA) -

Russia and Turkey have agreed on the route of the ‘Turkish Stream’ pipeline under the Black Sea. Russia's Gazprom plans to supply the first gas via a new route to Turkey in December 2016, Chief Executive Alexei Miller said in a statement on Tuesday.

Six hundred and sixty kilometers of the new Turkish Stream pipeline will go through the old South Stream corridor and a further 250 kilometers will head in the direction of the European part of Turkey.

Gazprom said last year it would build a new pipeline to Turkey with a capacity of 63 billion cubic metres (bcm) a year to bypass Ukraine. It had earlier scrapped a planned South Stream pipeline over disagreements with the European Union.

The EU, at loggerheads with Moscow over unrest Ukraine and keen to reduce its energy dependence on Russia, had objected to the $40 billion South Stream pipeline, which was to enter the bloc via Bulgaria, on competition grounds, Reuters says.

The proposed undersea pipeline to Turkey is seen as avoiding that problem. Russia has offered to link it with a gas hub -- also yet to be built -- at the EU's southeastern edge, the Turkish-Greek border, to supply southern Europe.

QHA