Russia EconMin: Forfeit Demand on Bulgaria over South Stream 'Unlikely'

Russian Economy Minister Alexander Novak. Photo by EPA/BGNES

Russia does not expect South Stream's demise to trigger any financial demands from energy concern Gazprom against Bulgaria, the country's Economy Minister Alexander Novak has argued.

In his words, provisions of forfeit are not part of the intergovernmental agreements Russia struck with all countries that joined the abandoned pipeline project.

The decision to drop the project was not "surprising" but well premeditated, since "such issued cannot be solved spontaneously," Novak says in an interview with Russian daily Kommersant.

Novak reiterates it was impossible to carry out a project if "no permits exist" for constructions.

He explains Moscow is in "constant interaction" with ministers of ex-South Stream partners, citing last Friday's phone conversation with Bulgarian Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova and her proposal under which Bulgaria would create a gas hub at the Black Sea.

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