Hungary woos rival pipeline routes

Hungary’s Finance Minister János Kóka has presented a bill in Parliament to make the country an attractive route for transnational gas transport. The intended beneficiaries of the tax exemptions on gas transported across Hungary are the interests behind the planned Nabucco and Blue Stream pipelines, both slated to carry gas from Turkey to the EU. Nabucco is backed by a consortium headed by Austrian oil firm OMV and championed the EU, and would carry gas produced in Caspian Sea countries. The Blue Stream pipeline is a planned extension to an existing pipeline carrying Russian gas under the Black Sea to Turkey. György Gilyán, Government Commissioner for Eastern Economic Relations, said in an interview with daily Népszabadság, “it is in Hungary’s interest to have as many transit gas pipelines cross its territory as possible.” (Budapest Times, April 16)

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