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No surprise Russia decides to stop South Stream implementation — Slovenian PM

December 03, 2014, 9:43 UTC+3 LJUBLJANA

Slovenia should search for alternative, renewable energy sources, the country's Prime Minister Miro Cerar says

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© Yury Belinsky/ITAR-TASS Archive

LJUBLJANA, December 3. /TASS/. Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar showed no surprise at Russia’s decision to stop the implementation of the South Stream gas project.

“We’ve not received official notice. I believe that this is Russia’s position and we should not show surprise,” he said on Tuesday.

Slovenia should search for alternative, renewable energy sources. “We believe that decisions can be made in renewable energy and innovation approaches that will stimulate our economy and our development,” Cerar said.

The Slovenian Infrastructure Ministry said Russia’s decision will not have significant negative impact on the republic’s economy. The law, which will allows the construction of the pipeline in the territory of Slovenia, has not been adopted yet. No permit has been given to build it within the European Union, the ministry said.

However the Slovenian authorities voice concern over the fact that gas supplies to Slovenia can fail due to Russia’s refusal to implement the South Stream gas pipeline.

President Putin said on Monday that Moscow would not be able to proceed with the construction of the South Stream project citing the EU’s “unconstructive position.” The Russian leader said Moscow has failed to receive permission from Bulgaria. Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller later confirmed that the South Stream project has been closed.

South Stream is a global infrastructure project of Gazprom for laying a 63-billion cubic meter capacity gas carrier under the Black Sea to countries in South and Central Europe for diversifying natural gas supply routes and warding off transit risks.

In the autumn of 2013, the European Commission launched an anti-monopoly investigation into the South Stream project on suspicion that it disagrees with the rules of the EU’s Third Energy Package under which companies are supposed to separate generation and sales operations from transmission networks.

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