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MOSCOW, July 08. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian gas producer Gazprom said on Tuesday its subsidiary, Tsentrgaz, had won a tender to build the Serbian stretch of the South Stream underwater gas pipeline.
The company said in a statement it had beaten four other companies from Russia and Serbia to win the tender, which was launched in March this year.
Tsentrgaz is a multifaceted construction holding that includes construction and assembly organizations, modern production facilities to manufacture construction materials, structures and items, procurement and marketing entities and social infrastructure facilities.
Under the contract, the company will be tasked with project development, procurement of materials and equipment, construction and installation works, personnel training and putting the South Stream pipeline into operation in Serbia. The contract also stipulates subcontracting certain works to Serbian companies.
The South Stream pipeline is designed to pipe 63 billion cubic metres of gas per year from Russia via the Black Sea to Bulgaria and then ashore for onward transit to Greece, Italy and Austria.
Russia’s gas export monopoly Gazprom sees the South Stream project as a means of diversifying natural gas supplies to Europe and reducing dependence on transit countries.
Russia and Serbia sign contract on South Stream
Russia and Serbia on Tuesday, July 8, signed a contract for building the Serbian section of the South Stream gas pipeline.
Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic welcomed the signing of the document. “I hope that today we will conclude the most important contract for South Stream,” he said at a meeting with President Vladimir Putin.
On Monday, July 7, Vucic discussed the project with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and reaffirmed that only technical questions remained but they “are quickly resolved”.
Serbia can become a regional energy hub with two extensions from the pipeline to Republika Srpska and Croatia and a possible extension to Macedonia instead of one from Bulgaria.
“The leadership of Serbia has supported this idea, seeking the status of regional energy hub for their country,” the Kremlin said in a statement in connection with the meeting between Vucic and Putin.
It also said that the two sides were studying the possibility of extending the gas pipeline to the administrative border between Serbia and Kosovo, while creating a consumer network in Kosovo on the basis of long-term contracts for the supply of Russian natural gas.