European Commission urges for accelerating IGB’s launch
The European Commission encourages all parties concerned to accelerate necessary steps to launch the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) as soon as possible, a European Commission spokesperson told Trend, as it received a letter from Romania’s former energy minister.
Romania’s former energy minister Razvan Nicolescu has sent a letter to the EU Commissioner for Energy Kadri Simson, asking to take measures to speed up the launch of the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria, which is aimed at transporting Azerbaijani gas.
“We can confirm the receipt of the letter and we will reply in due course. The IGB is a Project of Common Interest, and we consider this interconnection as a crucial piece of infrastructure needed to diversify energy supplies in South East Europe and strengthen the internal energy market. Thus, we encourage all parties concerned to accelerate necessary steps to launch the IGB as soon as possible,” said the spokesperson.
The Commission’s spokesperson went on to add that the organization has provided political and financial support to the project since the beginning.
“The project has received €45 million from the European Energy Programme for Recovery and €39 million from structural funds. Furthermore, the project has received a partial exemption from third-party access rules. The Commission has also approved state aid for public support and access to Bulgarian structural funds. The Commission has held regular contacts with the project company and regulatory authorities as well as governments of Bulgaria and Greece throughout the process, including in the last few months. We are now closely monitoring the final steps of project implementation, including those related to the certification,” the spokesperson concluded.
The IGB project is of key importance for increasing security of supply and for ensuring diversification of natural gas sources for Bulgaria and the region of Southeast Europe. At the regional level, IGB will provide access to the gas transmission network for Bulgarian municipalities and regions that didn’t have an option for connectivity. The interconnector with Greece is an entirely new route for the transmission of natural gas to Europe and will give Bulgaria and the region access to supplies from new sources. The project will connect the country with the Southern Gas Corridor and has excellent synergy with other major energy projects such as TAP, TANAP, EastMed and the LNG terminal at Alexandroupolis.
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