Brussels: The European Commission announced on Thursday the creation of a regional taskforce in Sofia that will shop around for energy supplies ahead of winter after Russia stopped pumping gas to Bulgaria and Poland.
"The European Commission and Bulgaria agreed to set up in Sofia a first regional taskforce, as part of the EU's Energy Purchase Platform.
This pilot will look at gas and electricity needs, prices and flows, as well as infrastructure aspects," a statement read. Russian energy giant Gazprom cut natural gas supplies to the two EU members on Wednesday after they refused to pay for gas in rubles. Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister Assen Vassilev called a meeting with Commission officials to discuss their next step.
The taskforce will look at how to use region-specific expertise and know-how to fill gas storage in the year ahead and seek to decarbonise the region in the longer term. Bulgaria will invite neighbors to a ministerial meeting on May 5.