"We are thoroughly studying the Balkan gas hub concept developed jointly by the Bulgarian government and the European Commission. In addition, after the appeal of the Bulgarian prime minister, our company began to study the technical and commercial prerequisites for our possible presence in the Bulgarian gas distribution market. We are currently embarking on a detailed feasibility study, which we plan to complete by the end of the second quarter of 2019," he said.
As for participation of SOCAR Balkan in the expansion of the Chiren gas storage in Bulgaria, Heydarov said the company had participated in a tender for 3D seismic studies at the gas storage.
"The tender is complete. SOCAR Balkan came in second in the tender and suspended its participation in this project. However, for us it was a very valuable experience. For the first time, SOCAR Balkan participated in a tender for technical work in the EU countries. In addition, we were able to get ahead of some European companies and took second place, which in itself is not bad for a newcomer to the EU technical services market," he said.
Back in 2015, the Bulgarian government submitted a package of projects on energy cooperation to Azerbaijan. In particular, the Azerbaijani side was offered to participate in the construction of filling stations, investing in the construction of oil and gas storages, oil refineries.
Bulgaria expects to receive Azerbaijani gas through IGB, a gas pipeline that will be connected to the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP).
IGB is a gas pipeline, which will allow Bulgaria to receive Azerbaijani gas, in particular, the gas produced from Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz 2 gas and condensate field. IGB is expected to be connected to TAP via which gas from the Shah Deniz field will be delivered to the European markets.
The initial capacity of IGB will be 3 billion cubic meters of gas.