Russian Deputy Energy Minister Anatoli Ianovskii told journalists during an Energy Ministry conference at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum that Russia remains committed to the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline.
Speaking at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum Ianovskii said, "We are a country that has signed an intergovernmental agreement. We are strictly adhering to what we signed. As far as I understand, the Bulgarian public is looking very closely at the project's environmental impact.
It must be borne in mind that, if I'm not mistaken, Bulgaria will hold presidential, municipal elections this fall. I think that this political factor is also affecting the decision-making process," Fokus informatsionnoe agenstvo reported.
Russia is concerned that support for the oil pipeline bypassing the Bosporus is increasingly caught up in Bulgarian political disputes. Speaking more bluntly than Ianovskii, Russian Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko said that there would not be progress on the Burgas-Alexandroupolis energy project during the term of the current government, noting, “Today within the sidelines of the talks we are holding, there is no chance for development on the project. Being aware about the position of the current Bulgarian government we do not expect any progress” before adding that he thought that it was too early to make any final decisions on shuttering the project.
By. Charles Kennedy, Deputy Editor OilPrice.com
Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com