Bulgargaz, the state gas company of Bulgaria, has commenced arbitration proceedings against Gazprom, seeking compensation for an alleged breach of contract, reported Reuters.  

The Bulgarian company is pursuing a claim of €400m (Lv782.33m) related to a contract dispute from 2022.  

The case has been brought before the Arbitration Court of the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris, France. 

“After the Russian side did not take action to settle the matter out of court, Bulgargaz took the necessary steps to protect the company’s interests,” Bulgargaz stated.  

Last year, Gazprom suspended its long-term contract with Bulgargaz, which accounted for 90% of the gas deliveries to Bulgarian customers.  

The Russian energy major ceased its gas supply to Bulgargaz in late April 2022. 

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Reuters said that its attempts to reach Gazprom for a response were unsuccessful.  

Bulgaria, a member of both the EU and NATO, has joined international sanctions against Russia following its military actions in Ukraine in 2022. 

Last month, German energy company Uniper officially ended its gas supply agreements with Gazprom Export, a subsidiary of Gazprom, after an arbitration tribunal awarded Uniper more than €13bn ($14.06bn) for undelivered gas since mid-2022.  

The Stockholm-based tribunal, applying Swiss law, delivered a binding verdict, allowing Uniper to terminate contracts that would have lasted into the mid-2030s. 

Uniper, which had been under financial pressure due to the absence of Russian gas and the need to purchase gas at elevated market prices, initiated arbitration against Gazprom Export at the end of 2022. 

Separately, the Austrian energy minister has established a commission to explore the possibility of cancelling a gas supply contract with Russia, with the aim of reducing dependence on Russian energy.  

The contract between Austria’s OMV and Gazprom is set to expire in 2040.