Construction timelines for the South Stream pipeline are on track and the European Union should restart talks about the project. That’s the view of Russian Foreign Minister Sergie Lavrov who is on a visit to Bulgaria.
The estimated 40 billion dollar project is intended to carry Russian gas to central Europe via the Black Sea. It would make landfall in Bulgaria which suspended construction after threats from Brussels which contends the project does not comply with EU rules.
“South Stream is very important for Bulgaria and South Eastern Europe as well as for the EU. This project is an important factor in ensuring the energy security of Bulgaria and the whole of the European Union.
‘We support construction of the gas pipeline in line with European legislation and hope that a dialogue with the European Commission will help launch its construction on Bulgarian territory,” said Bulgarian Foreign Minister Kristian Vigenin.
Bulgaria which depends heavily on Russia for its natural gas could face full infringement proceedings and possible fines should it ignore the EU Commission.
Austria another strong defender of the pipeline defied Brussels last month when it gave its final approval to the project during a visit to Vienna by Russian President Vladimir Putin.