Greece-Bulgaria Pipeline Begins Operations

Greece-Bulgaria Pipeline Begins Operations

In an effort to reduce southeast Europe’s dependence on Russian gas and boost energy security, Greece and Bulgaria started commercial operation of a long-delayed gas pipeline, Reuters reported.

Bulgaria, which has been trying to find gas supplies at reasonable costs since Russia’s Gazprom shut off imports at the end of April due to Sofia’s refusal to pay in rubles, will benefit from the 182-km pipeline.

After the West put sanctions on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine, Russia reduced its gas deliveries to Europe, forcing member states of the European Union to scramble to find alternate sources despite skyrocketing prices.

“This pipeline is a game changer. It’s a game changer for Bulgaria and for Europe’s energy security. And it means freedom. It means freedom from dependency on Russian gas,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said during an inauguration ceremony in Sofia attended by the leaders of Bulgaria, Greece, Azerbaijan, Romania, Serbia and North Macedonia.

“Both here in Bulgaria and across Europe people are feeling the consequences of Russia’s war. But thanks to projects like this, Europe will have enough gas for the winter,” she said.

One billion cubic meters (bcm) of Azeri gas will be transported to Bulgaria via the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) pipeline.

The pipeline might provide neighboring Serbia, North Macedonia, Romania, Moldova, and Ukraine with non-Russian gas. Its initial capacity is 3 bcm per year, with intentions to increase it to 5 bcm later.

It will deliver gas to Stara Zagora in Bulgaria from Kumodini in northern Greece. IGB is connected to a different pipeline that travels via the Southern Gas Corridor and delivers Azeri gas to Europe.

On Friday, gas companies in Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, and Slovakia suggested using their networks to send more shipments from Azerbaijan to central Europe.


Welcome! Login in to your account

Remember me Lost your password?

Don't have account. Register

Lost Password