Turkey and Azerbaijan signed a deal on Monday on the construction of a natural gas pipeline that will connect Azerbaijan to Europe via Turkey, Turkish semi-official Anatolia news agency reported. The new pipeline will be designed by the Azerbaijani state- owned oil company SOCAR and is expected to reduce the cost of transporting Azerbaijani gas bounding for Turkish and European markets, according to the report. Under the deal signed by Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz and his Azerbaijani counterpart Natig Aliyev, a consortium comprising Turkish Petroleum Pipeline Corp., Turkish Petroleum Corporation and SOCAR will be set up for the project. Later in the process, other international oil and natural gas companies will be allowed to join the team. Currently, the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum Pipeline, also known as the South Caucasus Pipeline, is transporting Azerbaijani natural gas to Turkey.