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Testing of Hungarian pipeline delayed

WHILE the testing of the gas pipeline interconnection between the transmission systems of Slovakia and Hungary will be delayed, its commercial operation should be launched as planned as of the beginning of next year, the SITA newswire reported on September 22.

WHILE the testing of the gas pipeline interconnection between the transmission systems of Slovakia and Hungary will be delayed, its commercial operation should be launched as planned as of the beginning of next year, the SITA newswire reported on September 22.

The testing was originally planned to take place in July, but was then moved to September, according to the Hungarian daily Napi Gazdaság. The Hungarian company MVM, which is responsible for the construction of the pipeline, declined to comment on the situation.

The Slovak side has declared for some time that it is prepared to begin the operation of the interconnection. The pipeline, whose construction started last spring, already contains gas at the level for operating pressure. The Slovak operator of the gas pipeline network, the company Eustream, is now waiting for work to finish in Hungary, as reported by SITA.

The gas interconnection between Slovakia and Hungary will connect the high-pressure transport systems between Veľké Zlievce (Banská Bystrica Region) and the Hungarian village of Vecsés in the suburbs of Budapest. The two-way pipeline, with an annual capacity at 4.38 billion cubic metres, is 110.7 kilometres long, of which 92.1 kilometres is in Hungary and 18.6 kilometres in Slovakia. The construction cost €170 million, of which €21 million was paid by Slovakia. The project was also supported by the European Union within the European Energy Programme for Recovery with €30 million.

The Slovak-Hungarian gas pipeline should be part of the entire north-south connection that will connect LNG terminals in Croatia and Poland, and extend through all four countries of the Visegrad Group.

Eustream is also working on the Polish-Slovak interconnector. Being on the priority EU PCI list and forming part of European Energy Security Strategy, it is in the phase of preparatory works, the company informed in late July.

Eustream together with its partner Gaz-System are progressing in their cooperation aimed at submitting the CEF (Connecting Europe Facility) application and securing documentation required for the construction commencement. It is envisaged that the project could be operational in 2018.

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