The Bulgarian authorities have adopted a law that introduces an additional fee for the transit of Russian gas to other European countries, writes Bloomberg. The duty that Sofia is introducing will be 20 Bulgarian leva ($10.76) per 1 MWh, which corresponds to about $111 per 1000 cubic meters. m. of gas.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Economic Relations of Hungary, Peter Szijjártó, has already criticized Bulgaria’s decision to introduce an additional fee for gas transit. “It is unacceptable when one member state of the European Union threatens gas supplies to another country in the community, this is contrary to the rules and principles of European solidarity,” Szijjarto said at an energy conference in Moscow.
Currently, Bulgaria does not purchase Russian gas directly, but it is a transit country for further supplies to Europe – Hungary, Serbia, as well as other countries in southern Europe. About half of Russian pipeline gas reaches Bulgaria through the Turkish Stream.
As the agency notes, Sofia’s decision has become another irritating factor for an already turbulent market: the cost of gas in Europe has increased in recent days, including against the backdrop of the worsening Palestinian-Israeli conflict, which poses a threat to supplies from some countries. In addition, the threat of suspension of export facilities in Australia amid strikes, as well as problems with the operation of the Baltic Sea gas pipeline infrastructure, played a role.
Direct gas supplies from Russia to Bulgaria stopped last year after Sofia refused to pay for it in rubles, and now the Bulgarian authorities are seeking to refuse Russian oil.