Serbia about to embark on South Stream pipeline construction
The Serbian government announced that it is on the verge of launching the construction of the long awaited South Stream pipeline, due to run from Russia across Southern and Central Europe.
“The location permit for the construction of the South Stream gas pipeline in Serbia will be issued on Wednesday, and the building one on Thursday, Minister of Natural Resources, Mining and Spatial Planning Milan Bacevic announced on Tuesday,” Serbian news wire Tanjug reported.
The South Stream pipeline is due to transport Russian natural gas through the Black Sea, Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary, Slovenia and Greece, ending in Italy and Austria.
Further to the South Stream project, which is due to be launched in November 2013, the Serbian government signed a deal with Russia in March 2013, for the delivery of 1.5 mln cubic meters of natural gas per year for 10 years. The natural gas automatically be delivered via the pipeline once it is built.
The project will initially require funding of some EUR 150 mln provided by Serbia with state guarantees and Russian natural gas incumbent Gazprom, which is the majority shareholder of Serbian oil and gas company, Naftna Industrija Srbije (NIS). NIS will be responsible for the realization of the project.
Gazprom subsidiary, Gazprom Export, is expected to have exclusive rights to the pipeline capacity for 25 years, according to Serbian broadcaster b92.
NIS is listed on the Serbian Stock Exchange.
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