The Prime Minister: There is an asymmetry in the contract with "Botash" for the supply of gas, long-term contracts carry risks

There should not be a problem in the work of the Lukoil Neftohim refinery, because it is key to the fuel market in our country, Denkov was categorical

Industry / Bulgaria
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Source: Bulfoto, archive

The contract with the Turkish company "Botash" contains quite serious risks, because it is long-term - 13 years and is connected with serious financial commitments, which Bulgaria is obliged to fulfill, regardless of whether it imports gas. This was stated by Prime Minister Academician Nikolay Denkov, who answered questions from citizens and the media during a live broadcast on the official Facebook page of the Council of Ministers.

The energy and gas market are developing very quickly, in a few years the situation in Europe may be completely different. Very serious changes are expected in the storage, production and use of energy, and because of this, such long-term contracts carry huge risks, Denkov commented.

According to him, there is an asymmetry in the contract, which is not favorable for the Bulgarian side. We try to minimize the risks and make the best use of the opportunities of the contract, because it has already been signed.

The Prime Minister said that he is not worried about the request of the former Acting Minister of Energy Rosen Hristov, who stated that he will file a lawsuit against Denkov. According to the ex-minister, the contract is of exceptional strategic and economic importance for the country.

Under the guise of commercial secrecy, it turns out that there is a contract concluded with very unfavorable and unequal clauses for Bulgaria regarding the gas transmission systems between Bulgaria and Turkey, both Denkov and the Minister of Energy Rumen Radev commented last week. The Minister of Energy has undertaken to try to negotiate the best possible conditions for Bulgaria under this contract, the Prime Minister announced at the time.

The contract with "Botash" gives access to infrastructure, terminals and gas transmission network so that we can deliver blue fuel. There are no alternatives to this contract, argued Rosen Hristov and rejected the allegation of a lack of equality. Bulgaria needs long-term supply contracts, because this gives energy security and stability and lowest prices, the former minister believes, and admitted that if we don't use the capacity, we owe money.

For Budget 2024

Preparations for Budget 2024 start today, Denkov explained. Meetings with the finance minister begin to set priorities for him. At the end of October, it will be submitted to the National Assembly. The priorities will be similar to the changes in the current budget. There will be a review of where wages are very low and there should be some catching up with inflation. And although it was too early for specific details, weaknesses such as the disproportionate funding of state institutions would be fought.

On the subject of "Rosenets", he stated that this port is a border not only for Bulgaria, but also an external border of the EU. "A problem should not be created in the work of the refinery, as it is extremely important for securing the fuel market. For me, it is a priority to see why revenues do not enter the budget from there," he said.

"Bulgaria will have its first medical helicopter in December, the preparation of pilots and bases is going on in parallel. In January, the first helicopter will begin to perform its functions," said Denkov.

The cabinet has a plan to hold a meeting with the National Association of Municipalities in Bulgaria for the decentralization of municipalities, the Prime Minister also stated in response to a question on the subject. Such talks with the finance minister are forthcoming.

This is the second such appearance of the prime minister, after on July 6 he again answered questions on the social network on the occasion of the end of the first month of the government's work.

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