EBRD to Partially Finance Bulgaria-Greece Gas Link
The Bulgaria-Greece gas grid interconnection is to be completed in 2016, after which Bulgaria will be able to receive around 3-5 billion cubic meters of gas a year, according to Kiril Temelkov, CEO of state-owned gas transmission operator Bulgartransgaz.
Speaking Thursday during a forum titled "Natural gas – infrastructure, markets and services" organized by the Bulgarian Federation of Industrial Energy Consumers, Temelkov made clear that the gas grid interconnection would allow Bulgaria to receive gas supplies from the Caspian region through the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP).
Lyubomir Zlatanov, expert at the Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH), as cited by news portal 3e-news.net, explained that the environmental impact assessment (EIA) of the project had just been completed, and Greece was to come up with a statement on it in two weeks' time.
He said that the construction of the gas pipeline was expected to start in 2014 and the project was to be completed by 2016.
Zlatanov informed that the gas pipeline would start at Greece's Komotini, cross Kardzhali and Haskovo to reach Stara Zagora, where it would connect to the Bulgarian gas transmission network.
He told journalists that companies were already expressing interest in the gas pipeline, adding that this indicated that the scheme was economically feasible.
The gas pipeline is to be built with funding from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).
Apart from EBRD funding, the European Energy Programme for Recovery (EEPR) allocated EUR 45 M for the construction of the facility.
According to initial estimates, the gas pipeline is to cost around EUR 160 M.
The EBRD is still studying the project but the Bulgarian office of the bank plans to finance the project.
The construction of the gas grid interconnection was brought up in 2012, when a memorandum between Bulgaria and Greece was signed.
The Bulgarian contractor in the project is the ICGB company, in which the Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH) controls a 50% stake, while the remaining 50% are owned by Greek DESFA and Italian Poseidon.
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