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Bulgargaz to book 500 mln cu m of natgas annually at Greek terminal

Bulgargaz to book 500 mln cu m of natgas annually at Greek terminal

Sofia, March 11 - Neftegaz.RU. Bulgaria's state-owned gas supplier Bulgargaz will book a capacity of around 500 million cu m of natural gas per year for a 10-year period at the Alexandroupolis Independent Natural Gas System (INGS), offshore Greece, said Bulgaria's government, SeeNews reported.

Bulgaria's participation in the project is in line with the government's strategy for diversification of its natural gas sources, aimed at guaranteeing the country's energy security, the government said in a statement following its weekly meeting.

The deadline for submission of binding offers for capacity reservation at the Alexandroupolis INGS project was initially March 10, but earlier the company developing the project - Gastrade, announced the deadline will be extended to March 20.

Bulgarian gas transmission system operator Bulgartransgaz will hold 20% interest in Gastrade, which is developing the floating LNG terminal off Greece's northern coastal city of Alexandroupolis. Bulgartransgaz will acquire the shareholding interest by financing 20% of the cost of construction of the LNG terminal.

In January, Bulgaria's government said that Bulgargaz will participate in the LNG terminal's market test by booking between 300 and 500 million cu m of natural gas per year for a period of 3 to 5 years.

The Alexandroupolis LNG terminal project is planned to comprise an offshore floating unit for the reception, storage and re-gasification of LNG and a system of a subsea and an onshore gas transmission pipeline through which the natural gas will be shipped into the Greek natural gas system.

Earlier this year, Bulgarian energy minister Temenuzhka Petkova said the country will diversify half of its gas consumption by the end of 2020. Currently, the country covers most of its natural gas needs via imports from Russia.

Earlier this month, PM Boyko Borissov said that Bulgargaz has negotiated a 40.3% cut in the price of Russian gas imports based on an agreement between the European Commission and the Russian company. Bulgargaz and Gazprom have signed an agreement to change the pricing formula, setting as its main component the price on the regional markets instead of that of petroleum derivatives, the Bulgarian government said at the time.

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