Bulgaria hopes to strengthen partnership between Gazprom and Bulgargaz

Oct 17, 2007 02:00 AM

Bulgaria was hoping that the 900-km South Stream gas pipeline project of Russia’s Gazprom and Italian group ENI would strengthen a long-standing partnership between Gazprom and Bulgargaz, the natural gas distribution company in Bulgaria, Energy Business Review wrote in an article on October 17.
The new pipeline was expected to transport gas from Russia to Italy via Bulgaria’s Black Sea port of Burgas, cross Greece and pass through the Adriatic Sea.

Bulgarian President Georgi Purvanov was quoted as saying that the country was “attempting to build modern relations with Russia”, based on economic activities. Energy Business Review said.
Purvanov further said that Bulgaria had contacts with Moscow because Russia was the major source of energy for the region. However, the Balkan country’s vision was to become a part of European Union’s energy policy through diversifying its oil and gas sources as well as the pipeline routes, Purvanov was quoted as saying.

As part of its attempts to diversify EU energy sources, Sofia also signed up for the Nabucco gas pipeline project, a proposed natural gas pipeline expected to transport natural gas from Turkey to Austria, via Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary.
A recent article however, said that Bulgarian authorities seemed to prefer Russia’s South Stream project seeing it as the cheaper and better of the two. Should it materialise, Bulgaria’s opportunity would be a loss for a number of countries: mainly those involved in the Nabucco project, but also Ukraine and, ultimately, European consumers.

South Stream is a rival to the Nabucco project, both for gas resources in Central Asia and for markets in Southern and Central Europe.

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