imaage credits : Source Source: ICGB, archive. | Visual for illustration purpose
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ICGB commissions the design of GIS Stara Zagora in order to expand the capacity of the IGB gas pipeline

The independent transmission operator works in coordination with neighboring transmission system operators on regulatory activities and the issuance of permits for the use and development of natural gas infrastructure in the region in order to improve connectivity and energy security

After holding a tender procedure under the Public Procurement Law, the ICGB assigns a Bulgarian company the development of a detailed project for the Stara Zagora gas measuring station (GIS2), which will allow for the expansion of the capacity of the IGB gas pipeline. The transmission operator is working to develop the infrastructure of the gas pipeline and increase the total technical capacity of 3 billion cubic meters per year. per 5 billion cubic meters per year

The design phase is essential as it lays the foundations for a smooth transition to the next stages, which include the procurement of goods with a long lead time and the start of construction.

At the same time, the ICGB works in coordination with neighboring transmission system operators on regulatory and permitting activities for the use and development of natural gas infrastructure in the region in order to improve connectivity and energy security.

“The ICGB started the design stage of GIS2 Stara Zagora even before the binding phase of the capacity increase process, which is the standard procedure according to the regulations. This underlines the company’s strategic commitment to providing additional gas transmission opportunities in the region. The market test for capacity allocation at the relevant interconnection points is planned for July 2024,” said ICGB Executive Directors Teodora Georgieva and George Satlas.

As the next step in the capacity increase process, the ICGB and the Bulgarian national operator Bulgartransgaz published for public discussion a draft proposal for the entry-exit point in Stara Zagora. The information is available on the ICGB website, and all interested parties can submit comments and proposals until 4 March 2024. A draft proposal is also due to be published jointly with the Greek transmission operator DESFA.

According to preliminary technical studies, ICGB plans to have an expanded capacity of 5 bcm/y from the fourth quarter of 2025 for the entry-exit point in Stara Zagora and from the fourth quarter of 2026 for the entry-exit point in Komotini . These scenarios take into account the technical feasibility of developing the IGB pipeline as well as the non-binding requests described in the Demand Assessment Reports (DAPs) published in October 2023.

The Greece-Bulgaria interconnector connects Bulgaria with the Southern Gas Corridor and is part of the Vertical Gas Corridor. The pipeline strengthens energy connectivity and security in the region by providing access to natural gas from new diversified sources.

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