The IGB pipeline connecting the natural gas transmission systems of neighboring Greece and Bulgaria is on track for commercial launch on October 1st, the ICGB AD, the project company, told Trend.
The project’s implementation is in the final stage of completion and administrative procedures for granting operational licenses and Right of Use acts are ongoing in both countries.
The entire 31 km section of the interconnector on Greek territory was audited for two days (8th – 9th Sept) with representatives of the Greek Ministry of Environment and Energy (Hydrocarbons Directorate-Installations Department) and ICGB’s management. The audit is part of the procedure for granting operational permit for the pipeline’s section on the territory of the Hellenic Republic. The delegation inspected in detail the gas metering station near Komotini, one of the block valves, the tie-ins points with TAP and DESFA including the entire linear part of the pipeline in Greece.
“The entire procedure comprises of on-site inspections and a detailed review of a series of project documents. This is done to ensure that the completed works meet all prerequisites for safe operation of the entire natural gas infrastructure. The feedback we are currently seeing from the members of this site visit is positive and we’re hopeful that this will result in the timely issuance of the required operational permit for Greece”, noted ICGB’s Executive Officers Teodora Georgieva and George Satlas.
The two highlighted both the national and international importance of IGB’s commercial launch that is expected for October 1st. “We are looking at a pipeline that opens a new, secure gateway for diversified natural gas deliveries not only for the two host countries, but for the wider SEE region and with the option to transmit natural gas to Ukraine and Moldova as well. All efforts remain focused on completing the remaining secondary activities under the EPC contract and the required administrative procedures in Greece and Bulgaria in order to achieve the set deadline”, Georgieva and Satlas noted.
In parallel with the audits on Greek side, ICGB is cooperating actively with all relevant Bulgarian institutions for granting Act 16 and Right of Use permit required for operational activities under the national legislation.