Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov, who returned from talks with his Greek counterpart Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Athens, told reporters here on Monday that the talks were positive and constructive, as the two countries are strategic partners in terms of energy and transport corridors.
Concessions at the ports of Kavala and Alexandroupolis
Denkov said: “It was important for our country to see to what extent we could get involved in the concessions of the ports of Kavala and Alexandroupolis. Regarding Kavala, Greece is about to sign a contract with the concessionaire. It has been clearly agreed that Bulgaria will participate in this concession. The starting point for negotiations is a 20% participation of Bulgaria. This is independent of the LNG terminals, it only concerns the port itself. There will be developments on this in the upcoming months.”
The Prime Minister said that while the concession for the port has been suspended, however, once reopened, Bulgaria will be able to declare its interest.
Denkov said that the connections are in place. He added: “Greece played a key role last year, when gas from Gazprom was shut off, so that we could power our economy and domestic consumers with no interruption. We are now working hard towards increasing the intensity of the gas that can be supplied. This is done by putting in new compressor stations. This allows Bulgaria not only to be supplied, but also to be able to transport gas to neighbouring countries, to the north and west of us.”
The Prime Minister reported that Greece expressed interest in the expansion of the Bulgarian gas storage facility in Chiren, so that Greece can pay to use additional volumes. Greece has also expressed interest in the possible construction of new reactors at the Kozloduy NPP.
Alexandroupolis – Burgas pipeline
The Alexandroupolis – Burgas pipeline and the possibilities for importing oil to feed the refinery were also on the agenda.
Development of the railway network
Commenting on the discussion on the railway network development, Denkov said: “One [of the railway routes] is to Kulata, another is to Svilengrad. There were problems with the technical condition of the Greek railways. Work is underway, which would allow more cargo to be transported.”
The fires in Greece
Denkov shared that Mitsotakis expressed gratitude for Bulgaria’s help, who sent 20 firefighters at first and then 50 firefighters more to help get the fires there under control.
Denkov’s delegation on Monday included Minister of Finance Assen Vassilev, Minister of Environment and Water Julian Popov, Minister of Transport and Communications Georgi Gvozdeikov and Minister of Energy Rumen Radev.