In the Council of Ministers, two main contracts for construction of the Vertical Gas Corridor were signed - for the loopings Kulata-Kresna and Rupcha-Vetrino. That marked commencement of the actual activities on capacity increase between Greece and Bulgaria and Bulgaria and Romania, following which completion the Bulgarian gas transmission infrastructure will be able to supply additional quantities of liquefied natural gas from reliable sources, including the USA, Azerbaijan, Egypt, etc. Signing of the documents took place in the presence of the Prime Minister Dimitar Glavchev, the Minister of Energy Vladimir Malinov, the Chairman of the Energy and Water Regulatory Commission Ivan Ivanov, the Deputy Chief of Mission of the US Embassy Andrea Brouillette-Rodriguez, the Ambassadors of Hungary - Miklos Boros, of Ukraine - Olesya Ilashchuk, of Moldova - Anatol Chebuk and of Greece - Alexios Liberopoulos, as well as the Deputy Head of Mission of the Embassy of the Slovak Republic in Sofia - Daniel Ország.

"The initiative of the gas transmission operators of Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Ukraine and Moldova will guarantee energy security through diversified supplies in the long term," the Prime Minister Dimitar Glavchev stated during the ceremony. He emphasized that following the planned suspension of Russian natural gas transit through Ukraine from the beginning of 2025, the Vertical Gas Corridor, the initiator of which is Bulgaria, will establish itself as infrastructure of major importance for the entire region.

The Prime Minister Glavchev also noted the active contribution of the state to the successful implementation of the strategic project: “The Council for Development at the CM has already approved state guarantees within the draft budget for the next year and this will provide an opportunity for attractive bank financing. An interdepartmental working group was also set up with the main purpose to synchronize the actions of the state institutions involved in the project in order to be completed within schedule.”

"The vertical gas corridor is not only a strategic initiative of key importance for the countries in the region, but also an instrument to guarantee their energy security," noted the Minister of Energy Vladimir Malinov in his speech. In his words, the increase of transport capacities between Greece and Bulgaria and Bulgaria and Romania, which begins today, enables additional supplies from alternative sources, which is key for the secure supply to the countries of the region. "The cooperation between the Bulgarian and American companies in implementation of these projects of the initiative will serve as an excellent example for realisation of future energy projects of the necessary quality, on time and within the budget," emphasized Malinov.

The Vertical Gas Corridor is a strategic initiative of the gas transmission operators of Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Ukraine and Moldova, aimed to improve security and diversify the sources and routes for transport of additional natural gas quantities from the south to the north. At the end of May 2024, the Bulgarian gas transmission operator Bulgartransgaz EAD successfully finalized the most important public procurement related to implementation of the project for Spatial planning, investment design, procurement of the necessary materials and equipment, construction and commissioning of new sites for expansion of the gas transmission infrastructure. The contractors of the contracts signed today for loopings from Kulata to Kresna and from Rupcha to Vetrino are DZZD Hill International - GBS 1 and DZZD Hill International - GBS 3 respectively (associations with participation of Bulgarian and American companies). The total amount of both contracts is BGN 485 million.