site.btaUPDATED Gazprom Export Discontinues Gas Supplies for Bulgaria
Bulgarian gas supplier Bulgargaz Tuesday received a notice from Russia’s Gazprom Export that it is discontinuing gas supplies to Bulgaria as of April 27, said the Energy Ministry press office.
Bulgargaz says that the Bulgarian side has honoured all its obligations and made all due payments under the effective agreement for gas supply. “Following an analysis by Bulgargaz and the Bulgarian Energy Holding, it was established that the two-stage payment procedure proposed by the Russian side is at odds with the agreement that is effective until the end of this year and poses considerable risks for the Bulgarian side, including to make payments without receiving any gas supplies from Russia,” the statement says.
“The Energy Ministry, the Bulgarian Energy Holding, Bulgargaz and Bulgartransgaz have taken steps to ensure alternative supplies of natural gas and handle the situation. Measures to restrict consumption in Bulgaria are unnecessary at this stage,” the statement also says.
Energy Minister Alexander Nikolov will make a statement on the matter on Wednesday morning.
The head of the Prime Minister's political cabinet, Lena Borislavova, told BTA that there is no threat for the energy security of Bulgaria. “The government has been prepared with an action plan for this situation for months now. Alternative supplies have been secured. There is no reason to panic.”
She also said that Prime Minister Kiril Petkov and Deputy Prime Minister Assen Vassilev have been informed about this development. “We stand behind the position of the Energy Ministry,” she added.
Continue the Change, the largest party in the government coalition, said in a Facebook post: “Gazprom announced discontinuing gas supplies to Bulgaria without prior notice. Bulgaria will deal with the situation. We are working hard to minimize the effect on the price [of gas]. The formerly ruling parties promised diversification but never delivered. Instead, they built a gas pipeline for 3 billion leva that was paid for by taxpayers. By all of us.”