Serbia waits for Moscow-Brussels deal on South Stream

The matter of compliance of existing South Stream agreements with EU laws "is addressed in the dialogue between Gazprom and the European Commission."

Izvor: Tanjug

In case some of the signed documents need to be amended, Serbia will act in line with what has been agreed and the actions of other countries hosting the gas pipeline, Tanjug said it learned at the Ministry of Energy and Mining on Wednesday.

"Until then, Serbia will honor all the obligations it has assumed earlier,” ministry officials were quoted as saying and stressing that the gas pipeline is very significant for Serbia both in terms of the investment itself and the improvement of the country's energy security.

The European Commission announced on Tuesday that "work on the construction of South Stream in the EU should be suspended until a revised bilateral agreements."

The realization of the South Stream project in the section through Serbia is only one of the matters to be resolved between the European Union and Moscow, and Serbia is only one of the host countries and the only non-EU member, the unnamed Serbian Ministry of Mining officials added.

In terms of consequences for Serbia if, as one of the project participants, the country does not suspend the project until bilateral agreements between Russia and host countries are revised, Ministry officials underline that the consequences would refer to the process of Serbia's EU accession and not to any legal action such as Bulgaria might face.

"We are still not considering the potential impact of project delay, due to the fact that Europe will increase its gas consumption by 30 percent in years to come, so we are convinced that the EU and Russia will come to an agreement after all," the sources said, noting that another disadvantage to the EU was the fact the Russian Federation also "started gas supply negotiations" with China.

They pointed out that the Serbian-Russian agreement on cooperation in the oil and gas sector was ratified by the Serbian parliament, and that the South Stream Novi Sad company was formed as the main contractor in the South Stream project in Serbia.

"Regardless of South Stream, Serbia is already working on alternative gas pipelines and interconnections with Bulgaria, Romania, Macedonia and Croatia," Energy Ministry officials noted.

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