The Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) will contribute to guaranteeing the security of natural gas supplies, and at affordable prices, both for the citizens of Bulgaria and our European partners. The interconnector will play its proper part in the realization of the main objectives of the European Union’s energy policy. The statement was made by Prime Minister Galab Donev at the ceremony celebrating the official launch of the commercial operation of the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria.
Prime Minister Galab Donev highlighted the Caretaker Government’s efforts on compensating the delays accumulated from the previous period in the realization of this very important project with a view to its timely completion. The Prime Minister pointed out the importance of the bilateral political will between Bulgaria and Greece to complete this project. “Our common efforts proved successful – as of today the IGB is operational,” said Galab Donev. Further, the Prime Minister noted that the IGB is not only a commercial operation agreement, but also proof of responsibility and solidarity, which also extend beyond our immediate neighborhood.
The Prime Minister stated that the new pipeline has sufficient capacity to satisfy all domestic consumption. Furthermore, the IGB will ensure the diversification of sources as well as of routes of supply of natural gas for Bulgaria, which is key to ensuring the energy security of the country. As Prime Minister Galab Donev said, the fact of the existence of this interconnector renders our country less vulnerable and thus improves our negotiating position. Therefore, particularly in the current circumstances the IGB is essential for Bulgaria, far exceeding the specific economic benefits of its operation as a commercial enterprise.
Prime Minister Galab Donev focused on the challenges related to the steeply rising energy prices that negatively affect our neighborhood, the European Union and many other parts of the world. This difficult situation has been aggravated further by the on-going military conflict between Russia and Ukraine. In the Prime Minister’s view, the deliberate disruption of the gas pipelines in the Baltic a few days ago adds another warning that the security of supply of natural gas to Europe can be abruptly compromised.
In his address Prime Minister Galab Donev pointed out the great potential of the IGB, which will to ensure the diversification of sources and routes of supply of natural gas not only for Bulgaria, but will also, allow the transfer of natural gas from Greece to Romania, Moldova, Ukraine and to Central Europe. The IGB will be in full synergy with the LNG terminal near Alexandroupolis. It will serve as a link to the Southern Gas Corridor and will ensure alternative gas supplies from the Caspian region.
Therefore, the Prime Minister welcomed the EU-Azerbaijan Memorandum of Understanding on Strategic Energy Partnership and the possibility of increasing natural gas supplies from Azerbaijan. Galab Donev noted that this will contribute to the diversification objectives in the REPowerEU Plan and help Europe to end its overdependence on one supplier. The Prime Minister underscored the excellent synergy of the IGB with other major energy projects such as the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) and the Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP). The LNG terminals in Turkey also contribute to the security of supply of natural gas for the region. The IGB will play its proper part in the realization of the main objectives of the European Union’s energy policy, Prime Minister Galab Donev said in conclusion.