Bulgaria: Ready for new negotiation with Gazprom for natural gas

Bulgaria: Ready for new negotiation with Gazprom for natural gas

The caretaker government estimates that it will face serious shortages in the winter

THE Bulgariaone of the first European countries to cut off Russian gas supplies in April, said today it was ready to renegotiate with the Russian company Gazpromas fears are expressed of shortages in the winter.

Bulgaria, heavily dependent on Moscow for its energy needs, has refused to pay for natural gas in rubles and has stepped up efforts to diversify its sources of supply.

The Acting Minister of Energy Rosen Christoph stated today, in a press conference he granted, that “negotiations with Gazprom Export are now inevitable” “to resume deliveries of the current contract” which expires at the end of December. As he explained, this is “the only solution” to keep business bills at an acceptable level. Hristoff had earlier called on trade unions and employers to support this change of strategy.

“Negotiations with Gazprom will be difficult”he warned, stressing that the continuation will depend on the next government that will emerge from the parliamentary elections in October.

Reacting to the sanctions imposed by European Union in Russia on the occasion of the invasion of Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded that buyers of natural gas from “unfriendly” countries pay in rubles. Otherwise, he threatened to cut off their supply. Countries that did not obey saw the tap turned off: apart from Bulgaria, so did Poland, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands and Latvia. In the other countries, flows were down by about 70% in July, on a year-on-year basis.


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