Russia says second leg of Turkish Stream will go via Bulgaria, not Greece

The second leg of the Turkish Stream pipeline will go through Bulgaria, Serbia and Hungary, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Friday (26 July).

The Gazprom-sponsored pipeline Turkish Stream, also called TurkStream, will pump 31.5 billion cubic meters per year (bcm/y) of Russian gas to Europe under the Black Sea, helping Moscow limit the gas transit through Ukraine. Its entry point is on the European territory of Turkey, not far from Bulgaria and Greece.

What was less clear is which way the Russian gas will take further. Part of it, brought by the first leg of the pipeline, will be used on Turkish territory, mainly for the city of Istanbul. The direct supply replaces the current transit via Ukraine, Romania and Bulgaria.

Novak said the first leg of the gas pipeline was expected to start operating on 1 January 2020, which was already announced by Gazprom. The real news is Russia’s choice for the route of the second leg via Bulgaria, and not Greece.