Greece's gas transmission network operator DESFA is ready to reverse gas flow in order to offer Bulgaria gas supply in case of a gas crisis.
The gas company specifies in a statement that it has concluded the first stage of the upgrade of the existing gas grid interconnection, installing valves which allow the reverse flow of natural gas.
The investment amounts to 3.3 Million euros and was fully covered by DESFA. The Greek gas company argues that the upgrade contributes to the development of the regional gas markets in Southeastern Europe.
DESFA expects gas traders in Bulgaria and Greece to express interest in the new capacity of the gas grid interconnection. The finalization of this stage of the upgrade of the gas grid interconnection comes against the backdrop of the threats of Russian Gazprom to cut gas shipments to Ukraine on June 3.
Gas deliveries to Ukraine will be suspended if the country fails to pay in advance for June deliveries or if the talks between the EU, Russia and Ukraine collapse. The trilateral talks are to determine the liabilities of Ukraine and the price of natural gas. There are fears that Russia may suspend gas deliveries to the whole of Europe in a repeat of the 2009 gas crisis.
Reversing the gas flow from Greece to Bulgaria has already been tested. Bulgaria can receive up to 3 million cubic meters of gas a day through this gas grid interconnection.
According to calculations of the Ministry of Economy and Energy, Bulgaria can last at least 45 days in case Russia suspends gas shipments.
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