UPDATE 1-Belgium's Fluxys likely to join TAP by August

Fri Jun 28, 2013 9:08am EDT

* Fluxys says aim is to finish negotiations as soon as possible

* BP, SOCAR, Total also have options to take stakes

BRUSSELS, June 28 (Reuters) - Belgian gas pipeline operator Fluxys is likely to buy a stake in the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) consortium by August, TAP Managing Director Kjetil Tungland said on Friday.

"BP, SOCAR, and Total have options to join as shareholders of TAP, and Fluxys will most likely join by August," Tungland told Reuters by telephone.

BP, SOCAR and Total can also exercise their options over the coming month.

Fluxys CEO Walter Peeraer said the aim was to finalise the deal "as soon as possible".

"Being a partner in TAP would closely fit in with our strategy of bridging the markets to foster security of supply and market liquidity in Europe," Peeraer told Reuters by email.

Fluxys, which owns gas grids in six European countries, said earlier this month it would buy a stake in TAP if the pipeline were selected to ship Azeri gas to the European Union.

The consortium developing Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz gas field announced on Friday it had chosen TAP rather than the rival Nabucco West project.