During his visit in the USA, the Executive Director of Bulgartransgaz EAD, Vladimir Malinov, had a meeting with the US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Diplomacy and Office of Energy Resources Laura Lohman. They discussed the progress on the steps taken to ensure diversification and security of gas supplies to Europe. To achieve them, it is necessary to maintain an excellently connected and modernized infrastructure with increased interconnection capacities. Malinov informed about the declared high commercial interest in the conducted non-binding phase of market test for the interconnection points with Greece - Kulata/Sidirokastro and with Romania - Kardam/Negru Voda. In this way, even more significant quantities of liquefied natural gas will enter the market in Southeast Europe. "We continue to rely on the partnership with US companies, as demand for LNG is expected to grow with the development of new terminals and regasification capacity." This applies especially to the region of South-East Europe after next year commissioning of Alexandroupolis terminal, where Bulgartransgaz is a shareholder with 20%", emphasized Malinov. "The interconnector with Serbia is planned to be completed by the end of next month, which will enable supplies of liquefied natural gas from the terminals in Greece and to our western neighbour," Malinov said. He recalled that now, thanks to the increased capacities and bi-directional connectivity of Bulgartransgaz network with the neighbouring countries, Romania, Ukraine, Moldova and North Macedonia have access to liquefied natural gas through Bulgaria.
Vladimir Malinov also spoke with representatives of one of the leading research corporations in the USA - RAND Corporation that develops analyses and provide solutions on current topics. They discussed Bulgaria's role in the development of hydrogen energy and the transition to carbon neutrality. As a member of the European Clean Hydrogen Alliance and a participant in the European Hydrogen Backbone initiative, Bulgartransgaz EAD is active in development of hydrogen transmission infrastructure projects. "Thanks to its well-developed gas infrastructure, the future hydrogen network of Bulgartransgaz will be fundamental for the construction of the South-East priority hydrogen corridor for EU supply. The company is currently conducting a non-binding market study on the demand for hydrogen transmission services. Interest was demonstrated by both, potential producers and users of hydrogen, added Malinov. RAND Corporation stated its readiness to provide our country with an analysis regarding additional opportunities to strengthen energy security.
Vladimir Malinov further discussed with representatives of international financial institutions the progress on implementation of the project for expansion of the underground gas storage in Chiren. Talks about participation in project financing continue after the European Commission approved the state aid measure in its favour in August.