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Serbia begins pumping cheaper Russian pure fuel by way of TurkStream pipeline — RT Enterprise Information

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic has officially launched a section of the TurkStream gas connection from Russia known as the Balkan Stream. The new supplies will significantly lower household gas prices and attract new investors.

During the official official ceremony on the first day of the new year, Vucic said that the country had become “much richer” thanks to the gas pipeline. The gas price at the Bulgarian border will be USD 155 (with no additional costs in the domestic network) compared to the current price of USD 240, he said.

“With this gas we can secure the flow of investment in different regions of Serbia,” said Vucic on Friday, as quoted by TASS. “Happy New Year! Thank you to the President of Russia.”

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The Balkan Current was filled with gas on December 30th. The 403-kilometer pipeline with an annual capacity of 13.9 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas is part of the TurkStream project, which will be launched in early 2020. Russian gas will be delivered to Turkey over the first part of the route and the second line will extend to the Turkish-European border to reach European customers such as Bulgaria, Hungary and Serbia.

Russian Ambassador to Serbia, Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko, who was also present at the ceremony, said the completion of the pipeline was “the best New Year’s present”. The gas connection is one of the largest projects between the two countries, which, according to the diplomat, should give Serbia the opportunity to develop its own energy infrastructure and make it a transit country.

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Like Russia’s other major energy project, Nord Stream 2, which is in the final stages of construction, the TurkStream pipeline has been hit by US sanctions and Washington threatened to punish the companies involved.

Serbia, which had previously received Russian gas supplies via Hungary and Ukraine and was looking for cheaper imports, earlier defended its right to choose its suppliers, saying Russia’s were the most beneficial to the country. Vucic previously said he would not pay for someone’s political ambitions and “thug” attempts in foreign affairs.

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