Southeastern Europe Needs to Build More Gas and Electricity Infrastructure
108 ECONOMY - ENERGY - SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE
Southeastern Europe Needs to Build
More Gas and Electricity
Sofia, November 26 (BTA) - Bulgarian Energy Minister Temenouzhka Petkova Monday called for building necessary infrastructure for natural gas and electric power in Southeastern Europe in order to press ahead with the integration of the national energy markets. One of the main energy priorities in the political programme of the Bulgarian government is to diversify the sources and the routes of supply of natural gas, Petkova noted, speaking at a conference in Sofia which discussed energy security risks and prospects in Southeastern Europe.
She recalled that Bulgaria's gas interconnector with Romania, the first one ever built with a neighbouring country, became a fact at the end of 2016. Romania is expected to build a compressor station which will allow reverse flow of gas. The Bulgaria-Serbia gas interconnector is to be completed by May 2022. One of the key projects for the entire region is the Bulgaria-Greece gas interconnector, which is a major component of the Southern Gas Corridor, the Energy Minister said. It has reached a crucial stage, with public procurement procedures nearing completion and a financing agreement being prepared with the European Investment Bank. For the fourth year in a row, the Bulgarian government has confirmed its 110 million euro guarantee for the Bulgaria-Greece gas interconnector project, Petkova said.
Yet another way for Bulgaria to diversify its gas sources is by taking part in the construction of a liquefied natural gas terminal at the Greek port of Alexandroupolis, she said.
A feasibility study for building a Balkan gas hub at the Bulgarian seaport of Varna will be unveiled next year, according to Petkova. The project requires the building of infrastructure and the creation of a gas exchange.
Electricity infrastructure will also be developed in view of ensuring energy security. The electricity markets in Southeastern Europe are to be united, Petkova said. LI/VE