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Bulgaria to buy 20% stake in LNG terminal

Bulgaria will buy a 20% stake in a liquefied natural gas (LNG)terminal off northern Greece as it works to move away from its almost complete dependence on gas from Russia, the government said.

The United States and Qatar are expected the be the main suppliers of LNG for the facility.

“The diversification is not just words,” Prime Minister Boyko Borissov told reporters at the opening of the first session of the U.S.-Bulgaria strategic dialogue.

He said Bulgaria’s stake in the gas terminal would be the same as that of Greece’s state energy company DEPA.

Under the deal, state-owned gas company Bulgartransgaz will buy 20% of Gastrade, part of Greek energy company Copelouzos, which is developing a floating LNG facility off the Greek city of Alexandroupolis.

The LNG terminal, which will have an estimated annual capacity of about 6.1 billion cubic meters (bcm), will aim to supply gas to southeastern Europe via the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) natural gas pipeline.

The government said state gas provider Bulgargaz should take part in the binding market test for the terminal and book between 300 and 500 million cubic meters (mcm) of gas per year for a period of three to five years.

At the moment, Bulgaria meets its gas needs of about 3 billion cubic meters per year mainly with deliveries from Russia’s Gazprom. However, it imported some 400,000 mcm of gas from Greece last year for the first time.

Reporting by Tsvetelia Tsolova; Editing by Jason Neely and David Clarke


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FEATURED COLUMNS

Editorial Comment: The Future of FLNG: Less is More?
-Adrienne Blume
Global LNG export capacity is expected to increase by 45% between 2017 and 2022, to more than 400 metric MMtpy, with 90% of the new capacity coming from sanctioned projects in the U.S. and Australia. By 2050, this capacity is anticipated to exceed 700 MMtpy. Regasification capacity is anticipated to increase even more sharply.
Executive Viewpoint: Back to production: Where we’re going, we don’t need pipelines
-Mark Casaday
What if a cost-effective way existed to extract and distribute natural gas, regardless of proximity to pipeline, and bring those assets back to production? What if the industry went in a direction that did not need pipelines? For those looking to monetize unproductive natural gas assets or bring unproductive wells back to production, it would be revolutionary.
Regional Focus:Australia to boost LNG exports despite domestic gas shortage
-Eugene Gerden
Australia is planning further increases in LNG production and exports over the next decade, despite quickly depleting reserves and a looming supply shortage in the domestic market.


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