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9 June, 2014 16:17   ▪  

First Bulgaria, then Serbia halt work on South Stream

Serbia was forced to halt work on the South Stream gas pipeline, Vice Premier and Transport and Infrastructure Minister Zorana Mihajlović said on Monday

Reportedly, Serbia’s move resulted from Bulgaria’s statements of stopping work on the pipeline.

"Bulgaria is the center. Until Bulgaria finishes negotiations with Brussels and the European Union and Russia, the project is suspended. Or until Russia changes the route. Either way, the first and second scenarios mean there will be a delay in construction in our countryMihajlović said.

Later, however, Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said no official decision has yet been made on Serbia’s part in the project.

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On Sunday, June 8, Bulgarian Premier Plamen Oresharski ordered a halt of all work on the South Stream project.

The European Commission has proposed to halt the South Sream.

RELATED ARTICLE: Is Gazprom on the Ropes?

According to a 3 June statement from Focus News, a Bulgarian news agency, the European Commission launched an investigation concerning the construction of the South Stream mainland part and Bulgaria’s role in it.

Gazprom has claimed that it is ready to build the South Stream on its own.

RELATED ARTICLE: Gazprom’s Nightmare

Bulgaria is the main country in the route of the South Stream, a gas pipeline with the capacity of 63bn cu m. It is planned to bypass Ukraine with the underwater part going through the Black Sea, surfacing in Bulgaria and continuing through Serbia, Hungary, Greece, Slovenia and Croatia, to reach Northern Italy. The construction began on December 7, 2012, in Anapa, a Russian town on the Black Sea coast. According to the initial plan, the first commercial deliveries were supposed to arrive in Q1’2016. The pipeline could use its full capacity by 2018.

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