March 15, 2012
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Russia Determined to Build Trans-Balkan Pipe

The Russian side is still bent on constructing the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline, in spite of Bulgaria's withdrawal from the project.

This was confirmed by Trans-Balkan Pipeline consortium advisory board member Mikhail Barkov for ITAR-TASS.

Russia will insist on executing the Burgas-Alexandroupolis project given minimzation of costs on it.

The matter will be further discussed Tuesday at a sitting of the Trans-Balkan Pipeline advisory board, which has been considering freezing the project.

The agreement to build the oil pipeline was siged in 2008, but in the end of 2011 Bulgaria revealed it is giving up on the project, and paid the Russian and Greek sides the needed dues.

In the interview, Barkov stated that the Burgas-Alexandroupolis pipeline will benefit not only Bulgaria and Greece, but the whole of Europe, as it diversifies ways to bring oil from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean.

He also said that it is in Russia's best interest to preserve the existence of a company to manage the project in the long term.

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