Excavation work has started in the first two kilometers of the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) route, Azerbaijan’s ambassador to Bulgaria Nargiz Gurbanova told Trend.
She noted that the information was provided during the examination of IGB progress in Bulgaria.
"On Nov.11, 2019, an inspection was organized for examining the process of IGB construction. The inspection was held between the Voyvodovo and Orlovo villages of Bulgaria’s Haskovo district with participation of Bulgaria’s Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova, the US Ambassador to Bulgaria Herro Mustafa alongside with me, Greek ambassador to Bulgaria Dimitrios Chronopoulos, executive director of ICGB AD from Bulgaria Teodora Georgieva and other officials," said the envoy.
During the inspection, the Bulgarian side said that by late 2020, it will ensure gas imports from Azerbaijan, US, Qatar, Egypt and other sources and achieve energy independence, said Gurbanova.
"It was noted that IGB project will ensure diversification of gas supply sources and routes for South-East Europe. Excavation work has started in the first 2-kilometer area of the IGB route and the pipes for construction of the pipeline’s 1-kilometer section have been delivered to the site. Moreover, center line on the pipeline’s 4-kilometer section has been marked and the area has been cleared," noted the ambassador.
She went on to add that Bulgarian side has taken a number of important steps for construction of Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria envisaging transportation of 1 billion cubic meters of Azerbaijani gas to Bulgaria per year via the Trans Adriatic Pipeline, which is a part of the Southern Gas Corridor.
"All necessary tenders for the project have been finalized this year; companies were selected for the design, supply and construction of IGB, as well as for supply of pipelines, construction supervision, survey of archaeological sites along the pipeline route and engineering consultancy. All final documents required for starting the construction have been signed. On May 22, 2019, IGB groundbreaking ceremony was held near the Bulgarian village of Kirkovo with participation of the First Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan Yagub Eyyubov and Prime Ministers of Bulgaria and Greece," said Gurbanova.
The ambassador said she believes that the start of construction of IGB, which will transport gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz 2 is an important event.
"The implementation of this project will bring great changes to the region’s natural gas market. IGB will strengthen energy security in Greece, Bulgaria, as well as in neighboring countries and ensure diversification of gas supply sources and routes," she said.
IGB is a gas pipeline, which will allow Bulgaria to receive Azerbaijani gas, in particular, the gas produced from Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz 2 gas and condensate field. IGB is expected to be connected to TAP via which gas from the Shah Deniz field will be delivered to the European markets.
The Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria project envisages a two-stage development.
In the first stage, the pipeline capacity will be 3 billion cubic meters of gas, of which 2.7 billion cubic meters will be offered for the long-term market, the remaining share of 0.3 billion cubic meters in the short term.
In a second phase, also depending on the evolution of the market, the capacity of the pipeline can be increased to 5.3 billion cubic meters of gas thanks to the addition of a compression station: 4.5 billion cubic meters of gas 0.5 billion cubic meters of short-term gas will be offered for long-term products.
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