ECONOMY

EU rejects Sofia’s worries of power deficit

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs rejected concerns by Bulgaria that the Balkans would face a power deficit as Sofia prepares to shut down two 440-megawatt nuclear reactors due to safety concerns. The leading power exporter in Southeastern Europe, Bulgaria has drastically cut electricity exports to its neighbors after problems with the supply of the Ukrainian coal used in its thermal power plants, Bulgarian Economy Minister Rumen Ovcharov said last week. Ovcharov said he would warn Piebalgs in a letter about the potential power problems Bulgaria’s neighbors will face. «The closure of the power station was well-known for a long time and it’s (a) commitment from Bulgaria itself. So we shouldn’t go back to the issue,» Piebalgs told reporters, adding he was aware of the letter. «Definitely there is some work to be done to produce more power (in the region), but still there will not be blackouts. So it is enough power generation capacity,» he said.