Energy Minister Pays Working Visit to United States
During a working visit to the United States, a Bulgarian delegation led by Energy Minister Temenouzhka Petkova discussed opportunities to promote bilateral relations, Petkova's ministry reported on Tuesday.
On Monday, the Minister talked with Under Secretary of Energy Mark Menezes, President Donald Trump's Deputy Assistant for International Economic Affairs Thomas Storch, Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources Francis Fannon, Commercial Service Deputy Director General Dale Tasharski, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of
International Security and Nonproliferation Ann Ganzer, and representatives of the US liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry.
According to the press release, Bulgaria will continue to seek diversification of the sources from which it receives natural gas and the routes of supply. Bulgaria and the United States
have ample opportunities for cooperation in the field of LNG.
Petkova said that 50 per cent of natural gas consumption in Bulgaria will be diversified by the end of this year. This means that 1.5 billion out of 3 billion cubic metres of gas consumed
annually in the country will come from sources other than Russia. These will include Azerbaijan and the United States.
LNG deliveries from the United States to Bulgaria began in June 2019. By the end of 2019, Bulgaria received half a billion cubic metres of LNG. Petkova commented: "This was an important step forward in building a transparent, financially liquid and reliable market in natural gas not only in Bulgaria but also in the region."
During her meeting with Under Secretary of Energy Mark Menezes, Petkova presented the progress achieved in infrastructure projects of key importance to Bulgaria, including the construction of the Greece-Bulgaria Gas Interconnector.
Talking with the President's Deputy Assistant Thomas Storch, Petkova said: "The United States is a strategic partner to Bulgaria in the field of energy." The Energy Ministry in Sofia
recalled in its press release that an agreement to continue bilateral energy cooperation was reached between Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and President Donald Trump when they met in the White House last November.
Petkova also told Storch that cooperation between Bulgaria and the United States will help her country reinforce its energy security and diversify its energy supplies. She said Bulgaria
appreciates the support provided by the US partners for major infrastructure projects, such as the building of the Greece-Bulgaria Gas Interconnector and the LNG terminal at the Greek port of Alexandroupolis.
In the context of the two countries' strategic dialogue, US experts in natural gas and nuclear energy will visit Bulgaria in the coming months. At Monday's meeting, Petkova and Storch
discussed the process of licensing US nuclear fuel for Bulgaria as a way to diversify nuclear supplies.
Officials of Bulgarian energy companies are expected to meet with LNG producers in Houston, Texas to consider increasing LNG supplies to Bulgaria.