MOUs on Eastring Gas Pipeline Construction Could Be Signed "In Near Future"

EU | March 8, 2015, Sunday // 15:19|  views

File photo EPA/BGNES

Slovakia's gas transmission company Eustream has said it expects to sign memoranda of understanding (MOUs) on the construction of the Eastring gas pipeline with Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria in the near future. 

Slovak news agency TASR quoted Eustream spokesman Vahram Chuguryan as saying on Saturday the four countries have already set up working groups comprising officials of their respective gas transportation systems.

The memoranda should contain basic parameters of the future participation of the countries in the project, Chuguryan said.

Slovakia has proposed Eastring as an option for diversifying gas supply infrastructure in Europe. Under the proposal, Eastring is to carry gas from the Slovak-Ukrainian border to the Bulgarian-Turkish border, opening opportunities for gas supplies to Bulgaria from Northern and Western Europe.

Eastring could also be connected to a potential gas hub in Turkey, enabling reverse-flow supplies from the Caspian basin, Iraq, Iran, and the Eastern Mediterranean.

According to Eustream Director General Rastislav Nukovic Eastring construction could be funded from three main sources - a consortium of companies from Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia; the European Union; and the European Investment Bank or commercial banks.

The length of the proposed pipeline could be between 744 and 1,015 kilometres depending on the selected route.

The Eastring pipeline should be able to carry 20 billion cubic metres of gas a year in the first phase and up to double that amount in the final phase. The expected cost of building the first phase is between EUR 1.1 B and EUR 1.5 B.

The pipeline should start commercial operation by the end of 2018.

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Tags: Eastring, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, Eustream, gas, gas supply, European Union


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