In order to facilitate cross-border gas flows and provide free and non-discriminatory access to the gas transmission infrastructure, the National Gas Transmission Company Transgaz, Romania, and Natural Gas Transmission System Operator of Ukraine Ukrtransgaz have signed the interconnection agreement for the interconnection point “Isaccea” located at the Ukrainian-Romanian border near Orlovka (on the territory of Ukraine) and near Isaccea (on the territory of Romania). This Interconnection Agreement refers to the Transit 1 pipeline, which is used to provide gas transportation from Ukraine to Bulgaria (IP Negru Voda 1) via the territory of Romania.
This route historically was exclusively used by Gazprom to supply gas to Bulgaria. However, after expiration of the pipeline booking agreement the system operators decided to bring business rules on it into compliance with EU regulations.
The interconnection agreement fully reflects requirements of the Commission Regulation (EU) 2015/703 of April 30, 2015 establishing a network code on interoperability and data exchange rules. The system operators plan to provide network users with firm and interruptible transportation capacities in the direction from Ukraine to Bulgaria, and interruptible reverse flow capacities (backhaul).
This interconnection agreement is part of the regional CESEC initiative driven by the European Commission aimed at increasing interconnectivity in the CESEC region. Together with recently signed interconnection agreements between Greece and Bulgaria, and between Bulgaria and Romania, this interconnection agreement will allow bi-directional (but now only virtually northwards) gas flows from Ukraine to Greece, thus it will provide local network users possibilities to significantly diversify supply routes. (Naftogaz-Europe/Business World Magazine)