Romania-Ukraine Open Season Starts
Ukraine transmission system operator UkrTransgaz has launched an open season to determine the interest in firm capacity to import gas from Romania at Isaccea-1/Orlovka (Transit-1 pipeline), it said March 22.
Historically the transit point has been used by Russian gas flowing through the gas pipeline system in the opposite north-south direction, from Ukraine into Romania and other Balkan countries.
But a transit contract between Gazprom and Naftogaz is due to expire. So the open season will give shippers the option to draw gas of any origin up from the south into Ukraine.
Once the TransAnatolian Pipeline and TurkStream pipelines have been built and given the expected development of offshore gas production in Romania, UkrTransgaz says transporting gas from Romania to Ukraine will make strategic sense as it will create a south-north corridor and provide security of supply for Balkan countries. The existing Trans-Balkan pipelines will ensure the most cost efficient solution for gas transportation in the region, it said.
Transit-1 pipeline is one of three main pipelines used to ship gas to Bulgaria and the long-term contract expired in 2016. It will be possible to operate the pipeline in compliance with EU regulations after the transit contract between Naftogaz of Ukraine and Gazprom expires at the end of 2019. It can carry 5bn m³/yr. The results are to be published by June 1.
Transit-1 pipe at Isaccea-1/Orlovka - one of three pipelines at this point on the Romania/Ukrainian border (Map credit: Ukrtransgaz)