Yesterday, Bulgaria’s Economy, Energy and Tourism Minister Traicho Traikov announced that the government would “demand from Moscow economic profits” from joint energy projects like South Stream and the Burgas-Alexandroupulis line. But the kicker:
“Bulgaria is also going to further insist that the country's participation in the Russian projects is in compliance with the European Union plans for boasting the security of supplies.”
Seeing how any increase in Russian energy dependence is in opposition to EU energy security goals, the Energy Charter and – of all things – the G-8 St. Petersburg Principles, we can’t see how future deals with GazProfit et. al. could meet this requirement.
The Belene nuclear plant is probably safe, for now. But Bulgaria needs Russian financing to finish ths job. Thus, Borissov’s new government might soon see some A) pushback from Moscow, or B) magic suitcases of Euros. (A and B?)
During the campaign, Borissov had pledged to fight corruption and resist Russia’s overt influence in the country. Judging by the reaction, we might just see how well Bulgaria's former-wrestler turned feng shui aficionado turned prime minister can govern.