Bulgaria drops lawsuit to pull out of Bourgas-Alexandroupolis pipeline company – report

Bulgaria has withdrawn a lawsuit filed last year to liquidate the project company for the Bourgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline, according to a report in Bulgarian media on June 6.

The claim, lodged in an Amsterdam court, was dropped because “the Greek side suggested that the company continues to exist as the basis for future joint infrastructure projects,” news website Mediapool.bg quoted Finance Minister Vladislav Goranov as saying.

“We accepted this argument because the costs of maintaining this framework are negligibly small and so that it can exist as the foundation for future projects between Bulgaria and Greece in the area of energy diversification. That is why we withdrew our lawsuit in the Amsterdam court,” Goranov said.

The publication, however, notes that it was unclear how the project company, in which three Russian state-owned companies held a combined 51 per cent, would serve as the foundation for Greek-Bulgarian projects.

One of three “energy grand slam” projects signed by former Bulgarian president Georgi Purvanov with Vladimir Putin, then president of Russia, in January 2008 (along with South Stream gas pipeline and Belene nuclear station), the oil pipeline was meant to pump Russian oil from the Caspian Sea, bypassing the congestion in the straights of Bosphorus and Dardanelles.

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(Oil tanker crossing the Bosphorus, photo: alumbis/flickr.com)