31 May 2007 - 18:17
  • News Code: 106027

SOFIA -- Bulgaria"s parliament on Thursday ratified an agreement with Albania and Macedonia for the construction of a trans-Balkan pipeline to transport oil from the Black Sea to the Adriatic by 2011.

"The Burgas-Vlore project is among Bulgaria"s priority energy infrastructure projects and has a regional importance," the parliamentary energy commission said in justifying its proposal.

 

The $1.5 billion (1.2 billion euros) pipeline, known as the AMBO project, will link Burgas in Bulgaria to Vlore in Albania.

 

Like the Burgas-Alexandroupolis pipeline, the 895-kilometer (556-mile) AMBO pipeline will bypass the busy Bosporus strait in Turkey.

 

Ministers from Bulgaria, Macedonia and Albania signed an agreement on Jan. 31 setting out the legal framework for the AMBO project.

 

The project will be financed by 71 percent debt and 29 percent equity. It is being organized by the Albanian Macedonian Bulgarian Oil Corp., after a feasibility study financed by the U.S. government in 2000.

 

Once financing has been secured and impact assessments completed, construction could begin in 2008 and the first oil could flow in 2011.

 

PIN/AP

News Code 106027

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