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Bulgaria active for gas interconnector with Turkey

BULGARIA ACTIVE FOR GAS INTERCONNECTOR WITH TURKEY

Bulgaria is actively working for the construction of a new gas interconnector between Turkey, Greece and Serbia, Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov said on Monday.

Speaking at the presidential session at the 22nd World Petroleum Congress in Istanbul, of which Anadolu Agency is the global communication partner, Borisov said that energy resources are extremely important not only for all economies, but also in terms of global climate changes that the world is currently witnessing.

He asserted that natural gas is environmentally friendly and a clean energy resource that is important for all, and cited the importance that Bulgaria has in the transmission of gas in the Balkans.

"Bulgaria is an important actor in the Balkans and an important actor in its capabilities with its gas transmission networks. Currently around 16.7 billion cubic meters [of gas] pass through Bulgaria's networks thanks to our host Turkey," he explained.

Borisov noted that close to 80 percent of all compressor stations in the Balkans are located on Bulgarian territory.

Highlighting the speed of development for energy diversification, Borisov reiterated Bulgaria's efforts for the building of an interconnector with Turkey, Greece and Serbia.

The Interconnection Turkey-Bulgaria (ITB) comprises the construction of a new onshore gas pipeline between the two countries. The project, a priority for the Southern Gas Corridor, is crucial in terms of security and diversification of both natural gas sources and routes for the supply to and via Bulgaria and the region.

The Southern Gas Corridor includes three major pipeline projects: the expansion of the South Caucasus Pipeline through Azerbaijan and Georgia, the construction of the Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) across Turkey and the construction of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) through Greece, Albania and into Italy.

"With Romania, we already completed the construction of our interconnector. What is leading and foremost for our future is the construction of the European gas distribution hub. This is very important for the trade and transmission of gas for the region and Europe," he declared.

The Bulgarian prime minister also said that some of the largest international companies such as OMV, Repsol and Total are currently working in Black Sea waters, all in the Thrace basin.

"This would mean that at least from three locations in the Black Sea we will be able to flow gas into Europe," he said.

Borisov also said the country is currently actively expanding the capacity of its gas storage facilities and called for cooperation in the next gas corridor projects such as TANAP and TAP.

"I would like to encourage everyone to very actively continue to work on the next gas corridor project," he said.

He added that focus needs to be placed on the TANAP and TAP gas projects via Bulgaria and Serbia as the proposed Nabucco West natural gas pipeline project from the Turkish-Bulgarian border to Austria, in which he personally and Bulgaria supported, failed to get off the ground.

"We will very actively work to implement these gas projects along with the corridor," he said.

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