There will be Availability of Natural Gas for Bulgaria until the End of the Year, but at a High Price
“Natural gas for Bulgaria will be available until the end of the year, but at a high price”. This was predicted by the chairman of the Energy and Water Regulation Commission (EWRC) Ivan Ivanov and executive director of "Bulgargaz" Ludmil Yotsov after an open meeting of the commission to determine a new 60% higher price of blue fuel.
The director of "Bulgargaz" was severely criticized by the chairman of EWRC for the actions of the company. The company was also fined for delaying its application for a new price.
The public supplier Bulgargaz proved unprepared for the break in relations with Gazprom and was criticized by EWRC chairman Ivan Ivanov for not taking measures in time.
"Well, no, we actually thought it was a joke," said Lyudmil Yotsov.
"And you can't think like that, you know that President Putin's decree for them is more than a categorical rule, so basically, let me finish Mr. Yotsov, basically already after April 1, because the decree came out after March 31, and On April 1st, you received the first letter from Gazprom Export, they warned you, you didn't believe it, but you, as the head of Bulgaria's major gas company, should have acted not only by asking the Council of Ministers," said Ivan Ivanov.
"I don't want you to think that we didn't try, we tried, but there was no possibility, we did everything we could," Yotsov said.
However, the situation is similar at the moment, the company still has no clarity from where it will buy natural gas in September. Due to the delayed application for the gas price in August, the company was fined by EWRC today.
"I receive not only calls, complaints, above all from the Bulgarian business, because it turns out that in the first 12 days, the previous month and for this month, they do not have prices at which to make transactions," said Ivanov.
Bulgargaz admitted that until now the only reliable supplies of blue fuel are from Azerbaijan, negotiations are also underway with an unnamed American company, but for the future.
"The problem is that they don't have enough capacity at the moment. The capacity they have, they have signed long-term contracts after 2027, they can provide us with a long-term contract for 15-20 years, we can currently do it, but we don't know how relevant it is," said Lyudmil Yotsov.
The company is asking for a 60% increase in the price of natural gas this month. Most likely, it will be approved by EWRC on August 12.
"I am an optimist, just as Bulgargaz has provided gas so far, I think that it will provide gas for October, November and December as well," Yotsov said.
"I also believe that there will be enough gas, the price is a separate issue, but the important thing is that gas will be available", confirmed Ivan Ivanov
Against the increase in the price of gas before the EWRC meeting, the civil association "Stand Up.BG" held an initiative, which brought cold old radiators to the regulator.
"I am calling for an analysis of the contract with Gazprom because the fine that threatens Bulgaria for the non-received gas is over BGN 1 billion," said Maya Manolova.
Manolova also called for public auctions to be held for the purchase of blue fuel, so that such a large price increase would not be necessary.
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