Today, following up on the negotiations over gas shipments to Bulgaria initiated by Bulgarian President Rumen Radev on May 21 and 22, Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov.
As part of his visit to Russia a week ago, Rumen Radev already voiced a desire that Russian gas be shipped directly to Bulgaria via the Black Sea; he described that idea as “the Bulgarian Stream”.
Because Russia is currently implementing the Turkish Stream project, Borisov and Putin discussed an alternative scenario for Bulgaria to obtain Russian gas, which is via Turkey.
Borisov pointed out that Turkey would not mind that since the Turkish leader had already let Vladimir Putin know his position. The Russian President confirmed that information.
Putin said both Russia and Bulgaria regretted the Southern Stream project having failed: “It would have been very advantageous to Bulgaria. Yet we will try an approach from another side, namely via Turkey”.
Dmitry Peskov, press secretary to the Russian President, said, “Both Bulgaria and Moscow are interested in this project”. He emphasized that the project would continue.
After the negotiations, the parties said that Bulgaria becoming one of the distribution hubs for Russian gas supplied to Europe was a possible scenario.
In that case, the Turkish Stream pipeline would need an extension as far as Bulgaria. That would allow for further development of the Bulgarian gas infrastructure and help increase the number of gas-powered vehicles.
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