As of June 15th, nearly 160 km of the total length of the gas Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria are already welded, the ICGB AD, the project company told Trend.
“Quality of each completed weld is being performed. Over 95 km are fully ready – welded, tested, lowered in the trench and backfilled. In addition to the main construction works, the field teams are engaged in a number of other activities such as construction of ground facilities, special crossings, insulation, hydro tests and more,” said the company.
The deadline for construction of IGB is the end of 2021.
The IGB project enables the transmission of gas and supplies from new sources, making it key to Bulgaria's energy security and part of the national plan for diversification of gas sources. The capacity of the project is 3 billion cubic meters with the option to reach 5 billion cubic meters. Half of the capacity of the interconnector is already reserved, as four of the shippers are completely new to the Bulgarian market. A contract has been signed for the supply of 1 billion cubic meters from Shah Deniz 2 based on a long-term contract with Bulgargaz.
The conclusion of the contract for construction of the interconnector dates back from the end of 2019, as one of the main commitments of the project company in structuring IGB is the obligation to control costs within the approved budget, which will ensure competitive transmission for customers. The delay in construction activities and the approved update of the construction schedule for the end of 2021 are due to objective reasons related to the global coronavirus pandemic and do not lead to direct losses. The established alternative route through the Greek system and Siderokastro provides a temporary solution for servicing the contract with Azerbaijan until IGB is put into commercial operation.