Climate+EnergyNews EU reports that a Memorandum of Understanding was signed in Sofia today for the additional gas supply to Europe through Azerbaijan via four EU member states.
The agreement was signed by the Minister of Energy of Azerbaijan Parviz Shabazov, the Minister of Energy of Bulgaria Rossen Hristov and the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary Peter Szijjarto. It also included the Minister of Energy of Romania Virgil Daniel Popescu and the Minister of Economy of Slovakia Karel Hrman.
The agreement forms part of the Solidarity Ring initiative (STRING), proposed by Bulgaria and supported the European Commission to improve the supply of natural gas to the European Union.
“Azerbaijan has played a key role in ensuring the stable and reliable energy supply for our partners over the past two years thanks to the Southern Gas Corridor Project . It is important that we fully support infrastructure projects which ensure reliable natural gas supplies to Europe, and the diversification of supply. Implementing the Solidarity Ring initiative (STRING) will enable participating countries to not only import gas from alternative suppliers, but also be important links in the gas transit. “The initiative presents an opportunity to expand the Southern Gas Corridor Project, which will contribute to the implementation terms of the Memorandum of Understanding in the energy field between EU and Azerbaijan,” Shahbazov stated.
Szijjarto, speaking at the ceremony, said that the European Union should take steps to diversify the gas supply in Central and Southern European nations. He stressed the importance of this action as it would undermine the credibility of the EU in its energy policy. Szijjarto said that the EU should provide financial support to the infrastructure development of the EU. He added, “We need new sources and routes for natural gas.
Ilham Aliyev and Rumen Radev, the Presidents of Bulgaria and Azerbaijan, were also present at the signing ceremony. Ilham Aliyev revealed that Azerbaijan plans to double its gas deliveries to Europe before 2027. EU Energy Commissioner Kadri SIMSON addressed the group via video.
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