Alexander Nikolov: Additional supplies of natural gas from Azerbaijan are possible, but at market price

The Minister is still analyzing the situation for the construction of a new nuclear power plant

Energy / Bulgaria
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Shot: bTV

The thesis that the sun will stop rising with the change of one person is ridiculous, Nikolov thinks.

This was stated to bTV by the Minister of Energy Alexander Nikolov on the occasion of the changed management of Bulgargaz and the criticism that the company has received in the last few weeks. Many people are embarrassed by the change of one person. One department has lost benefits only for the month of December of over one million levs. Nikolov, referring to the contract for the sale of natural gas in Romania and speculation about how profitable these deals are for the state-owned company.

To the criticism that Bulgargaz has sold quantities of natural gas at a lower price, Nikolov commented that the comparison in prices should be made at the specific moment and for the specific transactions. "The deals on Saturday and Sunday are solely from surpluses in the system, which has made a profit of over BGN 1.5 million," Nikolov said.

"I recently read something and that is that the collector's legs are short." The fact that Boyko Borissov and former energy minister Rumen Ovcharov say it is about 60,000 megawatt hours, that they are both mixing in the same direction, is strange," the minister said.

He is adamant that there is no better price at which to conclude the deals in question.

"The ruin of Bulgargaz and the" great "financial situation start with a cash of BGN 800,000," Nikolov said. He explained that there are companies that owe huge sums to Bulgargaz and do not pay on time for their supplies, targeting "District heating and Varna TPP. There are responsibilities, problems that have accumulated over the years. The new management should start intending to cover all responsibilities. However, the new team and BEH will be fine," said Minister Nikolov. He is adamant that the goal is to preserve the state interest to the greatest extent, including by preventing intermediaries in the supply of natural gas. It is a similar thesis that has appeared in the public space in recent days that the goal is to lead to the creation of new intermediaries in the supply of natural gas in our country.

We remind you that the main part of natural gas in our country is supplied by the Russian "Gazprom Export" and our country is about to negotiate a new contract for the supply of natural gas. Any improvement of the relations with the partners beyond the market ones can happen after July 1, 2022. Additional quantities can be delivered at the moment, but not at the price, which is formed in the contract, said Minister Nikolov. It is no coincidence that he mentions this date - it is planned to start the commercial operation of the gas connection Greece - Bulgaria in the middle of this year, through which our country is expected to receive significant quantities of natural gas from Azerbaijan. And now additional quantities of gas can be delivered from the Azeris, commented the Minister of Energy Alexander Nikolov, specifying that they will be at market price. "When the executive director of a company cites a certain clause of the contract, at least the whole clause should be said in full, but it is not. The specific clause for supplies has the word" or "and a description of an alternative gas supply point," Nikolov said.

"After July 1, 2022, we will do everything possible so that the maximum amount of the long-term contract will come to Bulgaria and, accordingly, there will be a significant reduction in social stress," he added.

Regarding the development of nuclear energy and whether the Belene NPP will be built, the minister did not give a specific answer or estimates for the "attractive Belene project", as he called it. Nikolov said that it is possible that the equipment for the nuclear power plant will be used on the site of Kozloduy NPP. More details about such strategic projects were not given, because he has been a minister for only six weeks, it became clear from his words. "There are huge losses so far due to the attractive Belene project. If possible, these losses will be reduced if there is such partially available equipment will be used, if possible, in Kozloduy," Nikolov explained.

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