Bulgaria, Gas interconnection with Greece that the so-called IGB gas pipeline will be commissioned on 1 July

, SEE Energy News

Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov said after the visit to the construction site of gas interconnection with Greece that the so-called IGB gas pipeline will be commissioned on 1 July as planned.

PM Petkov said that the works on the project over the past three months has advanced as much as over the entire previous year, adding that he is in constant communication with Greek colleague Kyriakos Mitsotakis over the matter.

ICGB, a joint venture company of Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH) and IGI Poseidon, in which Greek Public Gas Corporation (DEPA) and Italian Edison hold equal stakes, in charge of the project for the construction of gas interconnection between Bulgaria and Greece, said earlier this months that the commissioning of the gas link could be delayed until autumn.

Executive Director of ICGB Teodora Georgieva said that the company still aims for 1 July as the pipeline’s commissioning date, but that deadline proved to be a huge challenge, adding that the pressure from the market to put the gas interconnection into operation is also great. She said that the timely completion of gas metering station near the Greek city of Komotini will be of great importance for meeting the initial deadline.

The interconnection was planned to be commissioned by the end of 2020, when Bulgaria’s 25-year deal with the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) to import 1 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year starts, but it was delayed on several occasions.

182 kilometers long Bulgaria-Greece gas interconnection is designed with the capacity between 3 and 5 billion cubic meters of gas per year, but it could be extended up to 10 billion cubic meters in case of commercial interest and economical justification. The construction of the pipeline officially started on 22 May 2019.