SOFIA (Bulgaria), August 10 (SeeNews) - Bulgaria has requested a two-week delay to finalising a deal based on the binding offer of US-based Cheniere Energy for the delivery of liquefied natural gas (LNG), caretaker energy minister Rossen Hristov said on Tuesday.
The postponement of the signing is necessary so that Bulgaria can negotiate slots for offloading LNG tankers at the Revithoussa terminal in Greece, Hristov said in an interview with private broadcaster bTV.
However, if the government fails to obtain the delay, the offer will fall through, Hristov added.
The offer for LNG deliveries by Cheniere was agreed by the former coalition government of Kiril Petkov, which fell last month after losing a no-confidence vote in parliament.
Former energy minister Alexander Nikolov told local media earlier this month that the binding offer of Cheniere is for seven LNG tankers, three of which to be delivered in 2022, with the first one due to be offloaded in October. The original deadline for signing a deal is August 19.
Bulgaria has sent requests to all available suppliers and is looking to secure natural gas supplies corresponding to at least a 120% of its needs, so as to provide for contingencies related to geopolitical uncertainty and potential technical disruptions, Hristov said in the interview.
Last week, the caretaker government said it will launch an imminent auction for the short-term supply of LNG so as to secure the country's energy needs throughout the upcoming heating season.