Bulgaria, EBRD to provide loans to Bulgargaz, Bulgartransgaz

, SEE Energy News

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said that it will provide two loans with combined worth up to 275.4 million euros to Bulgarian gas supplier Bulgargaz and gas transmission system operator Bulgartransgaz in order to secure the country’s gas supply for the upcoming winter season.

The statement from the banks said that Bulgargaz will receive three-year loan worth up to 150 million euros, while Bulgartransgaz will receive four-year worth up to 125.4 million euros, which will also be used for financing renewable and energy storage projects. Both loans are guaranteed by the Bulgarian state.

Bulgargaz loan will be used to partially refinance the bridge loan received from the Bulgarian Government for the purchase of natural gas. It will also help fund additional gas purchases from diversified sources, including from the Balkan Gas Hub and imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from neighboring terminals.

Bulgartransgaz loan will also enable refinancing of a bridge loan received from the Bulgarian Government and for natural gas purchases to replenish strategic gas reserves ahead of the upcoming winter season. Bulgartransgaz will also use EBRD’s assistance to meet the EU-wide requirement of a minimum 80 % gas storage level by 1 November.

In addition, the EBRD will provide support to Bulgaria to review and amend its national renewable energy sources policy, as part of the country’s EU-backed national Recovery and Resilience Plan. This technical support is being given to accelerate the process of tendering and installation of 1,425 MW of renewables and 350 MW of energy storage in the next four years.