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No alternative to South Stream gas pipeline — Hungarian premier

May 15, 2014, 15:50 UTC+3 BRUSSELS

“The Nabucco (gas) pipeline was the only projects designed to diversify gas supplies. However, it was not supported,” Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban says

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BRUSSELS, May 15. /ITAR-TASS/. Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban has said there is no alternative to the South Stream gas pipeline.

The pipeline should be built, Orban said on Thursday.

“The Nabucco (gas) pipeline was the only projects designed to diversify gas supplies. However, it was not supported,” he said at an international conference on global security in Bratislava on Thursday.

South Stream is a strategic project for Europe's energy security and should be implemented by the end of 2015. Work is currently underway to draft a feasibility study for the marine section across the Black Sea and the surface section running through transit countries. The overall capacity of the marine section of the pipeline will be 63 billion cubic metres per year. Its cost is about 8.6 billion euro.

The project stipulates for the offshore gas pipeline section to run under the Black Sea from the Russkaya compressor station on the Russian coast to the Bulgarian coast. The total length of the offshore section will be around 900 kilometres, the maximum depth - over two kilometres and the design capacity - 63 billion cubic meters. There are two optional routes for the onshore gas pipeline section: either north-westwards or south-westwards from Bulgaria.

Nabucco was supposed to run from the Turkish-Bulgarian border to the vicinity of the gas hub at Baumgarten near Vienna, Austria, passing through Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary before it reached Austria. The total length of the pipeline was to be 1,300 kilometres.

Nabucco was supported by an Intergovernmental Agreement signed in July 2009 and ratified in all five transit countries. This treaty, valid for 50 years, granted transit rights in Austria, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey.

The Nabucco legal framework - the Intergovernmental Agreement, the Project Support Agreements and the Gas Law Exemptions - supported a pipeline project reaching up to the eastern and southern land borders of Turkey and with a design capacity of up to 31 billion cubic metres per year based on a 56 inch pipeline diameter.

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