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24.10.2017 14:52
First meeting of the gas group Bulgaria – Macedonia for new direct connection
Temenuzhka Petkova: The gas projects Bulgaria is working on will be important for the diversification in Macedonia

  • © Ministry of Energy

The main gas projects Bulgaria is working on will be important for the diversification of the sources and routes of the blue fuel in Macedonia too. The Minister of Energy Temenuzhka Petkova said this in a meeting with her colleague – the Republic of Macedonia’s Minister of Economy Kreshnik Bekteshi, the Ministry of Energy announced. Minister Bekteshi is in Sofia for the first meeting of the joint working group which will explore the possibilities for the development of an interconnection between the gas systems of the two counties. A memorandum for that was signed during Minister Petkova’s visit to Skopje on 1 August 2017.
In the words of the energy minister missing infrastructure is a main problem for the Balkan Region and Bulgaria is working actively to overcome that difficulty. The main focus of starting next year Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU will be Western Balkans, Petkova said. She informed her Macedonian colleague about the status of the projects for construction of interconnectors with countries neighbouring Bulgaria.
Until the end of this month two public procurement procedures connected with the construction of the Interconnection Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) will be announced. Their aim is to have the construction of the pipe started in the middle of next year so that it can being operating by the middle of 2020. Minister Petkova reminded that Bulgaria has signed a contract for the delivery of 1 billion cubic metres of natural gas from Azerbaijan, which will enter the country through the IGB.
Bulgaria-Romania interconnector is already running and the development of the Bulgaria-Turkey and Bulgaria-Serbia ones is making progress, Petkova informed. The future gas distribution centre which is supported by the Bulgarian government will provide a platform for trading natural gas and a possibility for liberalization of the gas market in the whole region, Petkova underlined.
Minister Bekteshi also clarified that missing infrastructure is a major issue for Macedonia too. He added that his country needs an additional gas connection with Bulgaria so that it is not reliant on a single source. The joint working group, which meets today in Sofia, will explore the possibilities for the development of a new interconnection between the gas infrastructures of the two countries.

TAGS: Temenuzhka Petkova | Kreshnik Bekteshi | meeting | working group | gas interconnection | natural gas 

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