On the project of the oil pipeline “Burgas – Alexandroupolis

abarrelfullabarrelfull wrote on 07 Oct 2011 06:13
Tags: bulgaria greece oil pipeline transneft

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On September 30, 2011 the international planning company on realization of the project of the oil pipeline “Burgas – Alexandroupolis”, “Trans-Balkan Pipeline B.V.”, submitted to the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources of Bulgaria the fourth revised variant of documents on Assessment of impact of the project on the environment and on the social setting (AIESS).

Since March, 15 2007, the date of signing of the Agreement among the Governments of the Russian Federation, the Republic of Bulgaria and the Hellenic Republic on cooperation during construction and exploitation of the oil pipeline “Burgas – Alexandroupolis”, an enormous amount of work has been done. This important energy project is estimated for the enhancement of security of deliveries of hydrocarbons to the European customers and at the same time will allow to create new work places and factories due to the amount of investments to the economics of Bulgaria and Greece that exceed 2 billion euros.

The project has drawn world-famous consultants. Marketing, tax, legal, ecological researches have been carried out. The necessary preliminary surveys were realized along the route of the oil pipeline in Bulgaria and Greece. The technical consultant of the Company “ILF Consulting Engineers” (Munich) has developed the expanded technical and economic assessment of the project.

While working at the project, the Russian party pays closest attention to the issues of ecological security. The project, the aim of which is to take the burden off the Black Sea Straits and minimize the ecological risks in the region, is based on the highest international standards of ecological security.

Leading companies and experts in the sphere of environment protection have taken part in the development of AIESS. The company ILF in cooperation with the leading international advisory company on ecological issues, ERM, and local subcontractors – Bulgarian Geomarine and Greek Exergia, have realized correspondent researches. In those the professors from Universities, research institutes, technical consultants, including Himremontstroy (Sofia), Asprofos (Athens), Giprotruboprovod (Moscow) have taken part. The profoundness of study of this AIESS is unprecedented. The evaluation of the impact of the project on the zones of Natura 2000 is given in slightest details. A profound plan of liquidation of possible accidental oil spills is developed, though usually it is done later in such projects. Nevertheless the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources of Bulgaria has given negative conclusions on the presented variants of AIESS thrice. The last negative conclusion was presented by the Ministry on June, 23 2011, while giving the period till the end of September, 2011 for the consequent improvement. In the course of the AIESS works the Bulgarian party presented new demands, which lead to profound revision of certain aspects.

The Russian party has always tried to cooperate with the Bulgarian partners and to make a compromise, voting in the international planning company for the Bulgarian proposals. For example, after completion of development of documentation on single mooring points, the Bulgarian party, despite the decisions, taken earlier, made an imperative wish for planning another type of handling complex on the basis of a harbor wall, which provoked the increase of the price of the works of the planner and the terms of work. The Russian party supported this proposal, despite its obvious counter-productive character.

The work on the project is also being complicated by the position of the Bulgarian party on the financing issue. For two years the Bulgarian partner has not been taking part in the financing of the planning company, thereof the Russian majority shareholder (51 %), in order not to let the first priority works stop, has had to bear additional financial charges during this time (the overall debt of the Bulgarian shareholder is 7,3 million euros, including the debt to the Russian shareholder, which is 4,7 million euros). We expect the Bulgarian party, in accordance with the regulations of the Intergovernmental agreement and with the duties, assumed in compliance with the Shareholder agreement, to redeem the debts.

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