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Athens and Moscow at odds with the Bulgarians

Athens and Moscow at odds with the Bulgarians

The new retractions of Bulgaria concerning the Burgas-Alexandroupolis pipeline have caused great discontent in Greece and Russia...

The new retractions of Bulgaria concerning the Burgas-Alexandroupolis pipeline have caused great discontent in Greece and Russia, demonstrated during the comments made by Finance Minister Mr. Simeon Djankov, during which Sofia decided to ask that the Trans Balkan Pipeline company, which has designed the project, be dissolved.

It is no exaggeration to write that Athens and Moscow are outraged with the Bulgarians, since just days ago our neighbhours had unreservedly accepted the environmental report that accompanies the project and had launched a joint consultation to address issues which would result from implementation.

The issue was discussed on Thursday between the relevant Secretary of Energy, Environment and Climate Change Mr. Yannis Maniatis and Russian ambassador Vladimir Tskikvisvily, who conveyed the unequivocal commitment of the Russian Energy Minister - and, overall, the Russian energy policy - for the construction of the pipeline that is designed to carry oil to the Aegean Sea, which stems from the rich deposits of Tengkis the Black Sea, bypassing the congested Bosphorus, feared not only for delays in transport but also a serious environmental accident.

It is also characteristic that the pipeline will be the first item on the agenda of the meeting of  the Greek-Russian Cooperation scheduled for Monday in Athens.

Athens and Moscow are intensifying the pressure towards Sofia and, as presented in protothema.gr,  both sides have asked the Bulgarians to postpone the scheduled board meeting  of the Trans Balkan Pipeline in Amsterdam on December 14th, during which obviously the Bulgarian side would demand the dissolution of the company.

Greece and Russia are seeking official confirmation about Bulgaria's intentions - even now, only statements by Djankov are on the horizon who, incidentally, had used as a pretext that the project would be good for Bulgaria’s economy.

Furthermore, both partners seek to formally settle, finally, Sofia’ EUR 6-million debt to Trans Balkan Pipeline, since the  Bulgarians have not paid the amount attributable for their participation in the company’s operating costs.

What is certain is that despite the given desire of Athens and Moscow to work on a project has been around for 20 years, it seems that they are still having problems.


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