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Bulgaria Has to Complete Balkan Gas Pipeline Links by 2011

Date: 15.06.2009

Bulgaria is supposed to build its connections to the gas transit networks of Greece and Romania by 2011, or it will lose the money that the EU has allocated for those projects.

This was announced by the CEO of the Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH), Galina Tosheva, as quoted by the Pari Daily.

The EU has allocated EUR 45 M for the construction of the natural gas network connection between Bulgaria and Greece, and another EUR 10 M for the gas connection between Bulgaria and Romania.

Tosheva is quoted as saying that these two projects were a priority despite the difficulties in the present financial crisis because they were related to the energy security of the country. Bulgaria is supposed to submit the application forms for the construction of the pipeline connections by July 15, 2009.

The issue that Bulgaria's natural gas network was not connected to those of its neighbors came to the fore in January 2009 when a Russian-Ukrainian dispute led to the cutoff of Russian natural gas supplies for Bulgaria, and the country had no way of receiving gas from its neighbors.

Tosheva also said that if Bulgaria's new government after the July 5 Parliamentary Elections stopped the project for the construction of the country's second nuclear power plant at Belene, the plant would probably never be built as Bulgaria would lose its momentum in nuclear energy, and would be overtaken by its neighbors.

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