BUDAPEST (Sputnik) — There is no chance of reviving the South Stream pipeline construction project after Moscow was not allowed to implement it, Russian President Vladimir Putin has stressed.
"We have not abandoned the South Stream project, we were not allowed to implement it. There are some details, which are known for a long time now, but, I guess, I should say it again. In April last year the European parliament made a decision in accordance to which the South Stream was considered unpromising, and even harmful for the European Union. After this, the European Commission sent a letter to Bulgaria, urging [it] to stop all the preparatory work," Putin said Tuesday.
"There will be, of course, no return to the South Stream project in an earlier proposed form. We have agreed with the Turkish partners, and Turkey, after Germany, if my memory serves me right, is Gazprom's second-largest partner in Europe in our gas purchase volumes," Putin said.
The Russian president added, however, that Russia is ready to cooperate with the European Union on gas transit via the new pipeline, but everything depends on the European Commission.
"We are ready to go through Greece… We have no intentions to close anything, to cut ourselves from anyone, but it is the logistics question now – where it is more profitable, where it is more efficient. But this is if they will help us. If they will hinder, then it is not our choice, it is the decision of the European Commission, of our European partners," Putin stated, emphasizing that Russia cherishes its reputation of a reliable energy resources supplier to Europe and Hungary.
When commenting on Russian-Hungarian cooperation in the energy sector, Putin said that Moscow will give a positive response to Budapest's requests in this field after 2015, including with regard to the usage of gas storage facilities.
Speaking alongside Putin on Tuesday, the Hungarian prime minister said his country remains "fully committed" to continue investments despite the fact that South Stream has been scrapped.
Russia abandoned its years-old South Stream pipeline project that was to bring Russian natural gas across the Black Sea through Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary and Slovenia to Italy and Austria last December, announcing a fallback plan to deliver the gas through Turkey.