The European Union will hold an energy security summit on May 7, where it could announce a decision on the Nabucco gas project allowing construction to start, the EU Energy Commissioner said on Tuesday.
mile), €7.9 billion ($10.2 billion) Nabucco pipeline which would carry Caspian gas across Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary to an Austrian distribution hub from 2013 -- a project some people see as a pipedream.
Andris Piebalgs told Austrian daily Wirtschaftsblatt: “I believe that, on May 7, at the summit of the south-eastern gas corridor, we will be able to report an agreement that will allow the construction of the Nabucco pipeline.”
The summit has not yet been officially announced, but Piebalg’s spokesman confirmed it would take place on May 7 in the Czech Republic, which has made energy security one of its main tasks during its six-month stint holding the EU presidency.
Shoring up the reliability of energy supplies jumped to the top of the European Union’s agenda when Russia invaded Georgia last summer, coming close to a key gas supply route.
The EU was also recently rattled when a gas dispute between Russia and transit country Ukraine cut supplies to Europe during freezing weather, forcing factories to close and leaving thousands of households shivering.
Piebalgs said he had been surprised by the extent and length of this latest gas dispute. “With Russia, we have had sometimes very good and sometimes complicated relations. But the latest crisis most definitely changed Europe’s policy on securing energy deliveries,” he said. “That means we need to be stronger ourselves, we need to agree more and take measures to survive such crises.” (Reuters)