Serbia Starts Sending Mixed Signals about South Stream Project

Energy | June 9, 2014, Monday // 16:02|  views

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Serbia has also started sending mixed signals about the implementation of the South Stream gas pipeline on its territory just like Bulgaria.

In Bulgaria, Sunday's announcement of Bulgarian Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski that the country would stop work on the project until the discrepancies with the EU were resolved was followed by a statement of Economy and Energy Minister Dragomir Stoynev that the scheme was irreversible.

In Serbia, Deputy Prime Minister Zorana Mihajlovic said in an interview for the Blic newspaper that the start of construction works would be postponed.

Her announcement was said to be triggered by the latest developments in Bulgaria on the matter.

Mihajlovic explained that Serbia would wait for the conclusion of talks between Bulgaria, Russia and the European Commission.

However, Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic rejected her allegations in an interview given later the same day.

"The government has not made new decisions on South Stream. Everything goes as planned. If there are any changes, the government will make a decision and inform you," Vucic said at a press conference in Belgrade later on Monday, according to RIA Novosti.

At the same time, Serbian Minister of Energy and Mining Aleksandar Antic announced that the future of the project depended primarily on the agreement reached between the EC, the EU member states and Russia.

"South Stream to us is important as a development project and an energy project but it is clear that Serbia is just one country trough which the gas pipeline passes," he stated, adding that Serbia was the only other non-EU country involved in the project besides Russia.

Antic said that it was yet to be seen whether the authorities would come up with a formal decision on the termination of the Serbian section of the gas pipeline project.

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Tags: South stream, South Stream gas pipeline, Serbian Prime Minister, Aleksandar Vucic, Bulgarian Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski, Economy and Energy Minister, Dragomir Stoynev, European Commission, EU law


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