Bulgaria Starts Construction of TurkStream Link to Serbia

Bulgaria has begun construction of Balkan Stream, an arm of Gazprom’s TurkStream gas pipeline through the country to Serbia, Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov announced at a briefing following talks with Russia’s Minister of Industry and Trade, Denis Manturov.

The construction will be completed by early 2020, Manturov told reporters on Tuesday, according to TASS.

“They [Bulgaria] have the task to ensure the construction of a section from the Turkish-Bulgarian border to the Bulgarian-Serbian border by January 1, 2020,” he said.

“We are counting on the deadlines that were outlined by the Bulgarian side, in order to ensure the completion of the gas pipeline by January 1, in order to launch gas supplies through the TurkStream,” the Russian minister concluded.

In August, Bulgaria completed the first leg of the 403-km section of the pipeline. It was reported about the start of construction of the second section – from the village of Chupria to the Danube. In total, four sections will be built. Gastrans d. o. o. Novi Sad, a joint venture of Gazprom and Srbijagas, is responsible for the construction of a pipeline in Serbia from the border with Bulgaria to the border with Hungary. The Serbian section of the TurkStream will start operating by the end of April 2020.

The TurkStream project includes the construction of a gas pipeline under the Black Sea to the European part of Turkey and further to the border with Greece. The first line will be designed to supply the Turkish market, the second – for gas supply to the countries of South and Southeast Europe. Gazprom considers Greece, Italy, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Hungary as potential markets.