The deal for participation of the Bulgarian gas transmission operator Bulgartransgaz EAD in the project for construction of a liquefied gas terminal in Alexandroupolis is being finalized. The company was entered in the shareholders’ book of Gastrade S.A. as a full shareholder with all arising rights and obligations under the signed Agreement between shareholders.
The Alexandroupolis Independent Natural Gas System (INGS) is a modern, cutting edge technology project for an offshore floating unit for reception, storage, and re-gasification of LNG. The planned capacity of the terminal for re-gasification and supply to the Greek gas transmission system amounts to 6.1 bcm/y. The storage capacity is 170 thousand m³.
The project contributes to implementing the overall Balkan Gas Hub concept, which envisages to connect the natural gas markets of the countries in Central and East Europe by construction and development of the necessary gas transmission infrastructure. It is being fully implemented in pursuit of the policy and priorities for establishing a single interconnected pan-European energy market.
The terminal is in synergy with other infrastructure projects in the region, such as the Interconnection Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) and the Expansion of Chiren underground gas storage. These projects, along with Bulgartransgaz existing infrastructure, will improve the access of Bulgaria and the countries in the region to liquefied natural gas. The main LNG suppliers to the terminal in Alexandroupolis are expected to be companies from the USA, Qatar, etc. Natural gas can be supplied to consumers in Bulgaria, Northern Macedonia, Serbia, Turkey, Romania, Hungary, Moldova, and Ukraine along IGB and other existing and future gas pipelines in Bulgaria and the region.
“In addition to diversification of sources, project implementation will enhance competition between the various natural gas suppliers in the region for the benefit of end users,” highlighted the Executive Director of Bulgartransgaz EAD Vladimir Malinov. According to him, the terminal will improve supplies’ security and flexibility.
The liquefied natural gas terminal is being developed by the project company Gastrade S.A., in which the shareholders are Mrs. Asimina-Eleni Copelouzou, GASLOG Cyprus Investments Ltd. and the Greek state-owned company DEPA COMMERCIAL S.A. On March 24, 2020, Gastrade S.A. successfully completed the binding phase of the market test for booking of capacity and services in the floating terminal. Considering the total binding commitments of up to 15 years, reaching 2.6 bcm/year, the test results are higher than those for other similar facilities in recent times. The commercial operation of the facility is planned to commence by the end of 2022.
It is recalled that on August 24, 2020, Bulgartransgaz EAD signed a contract for purchase and sale of 20% of Gastrade S.A. capital with the seller Mrs. Asimina-Eleni Copelouzou, in which obtaining a concentration permit was stated as a preliminary condition by the Commission for Protection of Competition of the Republic of Bulgaria. An Agreement between the shareholders of the company was signed on the same date.
On January 14, the Commission for Protection of Competition of the Republic of Bulgaria approved the notified concentration that consists in the acquisition by Bulgartransgaz EAD of joint control over Gastrade S.A., Greece together with DEPA COMMERCIAL S.A., GASLOG Cyprus Investments Ltd and Mrs. Asimina-Eleni Copelouzou.