The Rasovo compressor station site (Rasovo settlement, Medkovets Municipality, Montana Province) in Bulgaria hosted a ceremony of welding the first joint of the Bulgarian section of the South Stream gas pipeline.
Taking part in the event via video link from the building of the Bulgarian Council of Ministers in Sofia were Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, Plamen Oresharski, Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria, Dragomir Stoynev, Bulgarian Minister of Economy and Energy and Alexander Novak, Russian Minister of Energy.
“A landmark event has taken place today: construction started on the Bulgarian section of the South Stream gas pipeline – the most large-scale and important project in Europe. This project is a key element of energy security of the whole European continent. Gas will be supplied directly from Russia to Bulgaria, from Russia to the European Union, bypassing transit countries, thus providing for the most reliable and uninterrupted supplies. South Stream will eliminate transit risks for ever. South Stream will accelerate the economic development of Bulgaria, attracting EUR 3.5 billion of direct investments to the country and creating over 2,500 jobs. A new gas transmission infrastructure will increase the investment attractiveness of Bulgaria. Bulgarian consumers will receive gas at a lower rate as the gas pipeline runs directly from Russia via the Black Sea. The construction follows a strict schedule: before the year's end construction will start in Serbia, then in Hungary. Therefore, South Stream is steadily running ahead. Bulgarian consumers will receive first gas via South Stream in December 2015,” said Alexey Miller.
As part of the event a working meeting took place between Alexey Miller and Plamen Oresharski. The parties discussed further steps regarding the South Stream project. A 540-kilometer linear section of the South Stream gas pipeline as well as 366 kilometers of loop lines and three compressor stations will be constructed in Bulgaria. All the agreements reached during today's talks fully comply with the letter and spirit of the intergovernmental agreement between Russia and Bulgaria regarding the South Stream project implementation.