We have achieved a new level of security of natural gas supplies. We invest heavily in the energy sector in order to be a geostrategic country, to be able to transport any gas via 100% Bulgarian-owned infrastructure and to have full diversification for generations to come. This was stated by Prime Minister Boyko Borissov who today visited the modernized Petrich Compressor Station that received the first quantities of natural gas supplied by Azerbaijan to Bulgaria. This is a major step towards the achievement of the Government’s main strategic goal to diversify the sources of natural gas supply to the Bulgarian market at competitive prices. The end price of gas supplied by Azerbaijan would enable Bulgartransgaz to approach the Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (EWRC) with a request to reduce the natural gas price for the Bulgarian market in January.
Prime Minister Borissov and Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova who was on the site too could see for themselves directly the real result achieved by the Bulgarian Government’s energy diversification policy. The cabinet’s moves to that effect relate to the priority goal, which is to guarantee the security of natural gas supply to Bulgaria and the region of Southeast Europe. The Ambassador of Azerbaijan to Bulgaria Nargiz Gurbanova said it was a historic day. “This is a dream of many Bulgarians and I am glad we made it come true,” Minister Temenuzhka Petkova said. “There have been many people with ideas, the desire and ambitions to do that; however, so far there has been none with the potential to do what has been done. There have been many seekers but no one has done it. It has not been done because it is not easy. Effort, political will and skills are required. All interconnectors were put in place in our terms in office,” Prime Minister Borissov recalled.
Bulgargaz Executive Director Nikolay Pavlov recalled that the formula with Gazprom had been renegotiated and over BGN 200 million were refunded to the Bulgarian customers. The gas stock market is in operation and the quantities traded are a key step towards the liberalization of natural gas. “Similarly the Azerbaijani supplies are a significant event and a major success,” Mr. Pavlov stressed.
Bulgartransgaz Executive Director Vladimir Malinov recalled that the first quantities of natural gas from Azerbaijan to Bulgaria are to be credited to the contract between Bulgargaz and the State Oil Company of the Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR). From 31 December 2020 to 1 October 2021 Bulgaria will be supplied with natural gas via a temporary route to the point of entry Koulata-Sidirokastro of the Bulgarian gas transmission network and once the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) goes into operation, the deliveries will continue at the connection point between the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) and IGB-Komotini, Greece.
Prime Minister Borissov and Energy Minister Petkova inspected the progress of the construction and assembly works site to modernize the Petrich Compressor Station that are scheduled to be completed at the beginning of 2021. The works are part of the modernization of the compressor stations of the Bulgartransgaz gas transmission network. As part of the first stage of the project, the Petrich Compressor Station acquired a gas turbine compressor unit manufactured by the US company Solar Turbines and meeting environmental standards. In the second stage of the modernization, the Petrich Compressor Station will acquire a second unit. The upgraded compressor stations make it possible to significantly increase the throughput capacity of the Koulata/Sidirokastro interconnection point.