BAKU, Azerbaijan, Jan.12
By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:
Currently, the construction activities for the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) continues, with trenching and lowering of the welded pipeline being reported by the contractor as completed, the ICGB AD, the project company, told Trend.
"Work is underway to connect all completed sections, and the total length of this activity is 4-5 km. 170 km of the 182-kilometer route have already been backfilled. A total of 6 out of 17 hydro tests have been performed, and this activity is ongoing. Recultivation has started in certain sections of the route. Work on the above ground facilities continues – two gas measuring stations near Stara Zagora and Komotini and a dispatch center near Haskovo," said the company.
The project company ICGB aims to complete the pipeline within the originally set budget of 240 million euros in order to stay competitive.
The IGB project enables the transmission of gas and supplies from new sources, making it key to Bulgaria's energy security and part of the national plan for diversification of gas sources. The capacity of the project is 3 billion cubic meters with the option to reach 5 billion cubic meters. Half of the capacity of the interconnector is already reserved, as four of the shippers are completely new to the Bulgarian market. A contract has been signed for the supply of 1 billion cubic meters from Shah Deniz 2 based on a long-term contract with Bulgargaz.
The conclusion of the contract for construction of the interconnector dates back from the end of 2019, as one of the main commitments of the project company in structuring IGB is the obligation to control costs within the approved budget, which will ensure competitive transmission for customers. The delay in construction activities and the approved update of the construction schedule for the end of 2021 are due to objective reasons related to the global coronavirus pandemic and do not lead to direct losses. The established alternative route through the Greek system and Siderokastro provides a temporary solution for servicing the contract with Azerbaijan until IGB is put into commercial operation.
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