South Stream pipeline can be built — European Commission

The South Stream project can be implemented, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said on Thursday.

The South Stream project can be implemented, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said on Thursday.

South Stream can be built, Juncker said after a meeting with Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov.

Borisov shared the EC president’s view. “We are in favour of South Stream. We want South Stream to be built in compliance with the EU legislation,” he said.

Borisov said the energy ministers of the countries participating in the South Stream gas project would meet in Brussels on December 9.

“The preparations were not stopped. It was scheduled that the South Stream energy ministers would meet on December 9. This meeting will be held and I hope that it will settle problems, including on the Third Energy Package,” Borisov said.

Meanwhile, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said Russia’s decision to stop the South Stream gas project is final. 

The pipeline will run to Turkey in compliance with the agreements reached by the presidents of both countries, he said.

On December 1, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in the current conditions, Russia could not begin the implementation of the South Stream project.

“Bearing in mind the fact that we have not yet received Bulgaria’s permission, we think Russia is such conditions cannot continue this project. I mean we are to begin the construction of the pipeline system in the Black Sea. We cannot begin the construction of the seabed section until we have Bulgaria’s permit,” Putin said.

Russia cannot begin the construction of the seabed section to stop at the Bulgarian coast. “It is absurd. I think it is obvious,” he noted, adding that Russia is forced to revise its participation in the project.

Gazprom CEO Alexey Miller confirmed that the South Stream project has been closed.

South Stream was expected to run across the Black Sea to Southern and Central Europe - Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary, Austria, Italy and Slovenia. Now Moscow plans to develop a “gas hub” to Southern Europe via Turkey.

Bulgaria’s annual loss of suspension of the South Stream project is estimated at 400 million euros.

First published by TASS.

All rights reserved by Rossiyskaya Gazeta.

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