Minister: Bulgaria welcomes SOCAR’s involvement in future tenders for Chiren expansion (Exclusive)

Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb.18

By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:

Bulgaria welcomes involvement of Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR in future tenders for expansion of the capacity of the underground gas storage facility Chiren, Bulgarian Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova said in an exclusive interview with Trend.

She noted that the expansion of the capacity of the underground gas storage facility in Chiren is important for Bulgaria’s energy security and is in synergy with the regional gas hub “Balkan”.

“Technical studies are currently being carried out before the actual expansion of the storage capacity of UGS Chiren which will start with new drillings and construction of the ground infrastructure. Its capacity is estimated to reach up to 1 bcm with a daily withdrawal capacity of up to 10 million cubic metres. The involvement of SOCAR that has exclusive experience and expertise in such activities in future tenders for the expansion of UGS Chiren is welcomed by the Bulgarian side,” said Bulgaria’s energy minister.

Petkova went on to add that Bulgaria closely monitors the forecasts for consumption on the regional and European gas markets and is involved in the development of important gas projects.

“Over 30 years our country has been the gas hub in SEE and it intends to maintain and expand its position as a main transporter of natural gas in the region, through the implementation of new interconnectors with Greece, Serbia and Turkey, the infrastructure of the regional “Balkan” gas hub, including through the expansion of the capacity of UGS Chiren,” she added.

Earlier, head of SOCAR Balkan Murad Heydarov told Trend that the company had participated in a tender for 3D seismic studies at the gas storage.

"The tender is complete. SOCAR Balkan came in second in the tender and suspended its participation in this project. However, for us it was a very valuable experience. For the first time, SOCAR Balkan participated in a tender for technical work in the EU countries. In addition, we were able to get ahead of some European companies and took second place, which in itself is not bad for a newcomer to the EU technical services market," he said.

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Follow the author on Twitter: @Lyaman_Zeyn

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