Updated last 26.03.2021
This section provides the following information:
- General information as to the connection to the gas distribution network;
- Information as to who can connect and who can offer the service;
- Information regarding the connection procedure:
- Filing of an application for connection to the gas distribution network;
- Survey and providing a written opinion as to the conditions for the connection of the site;
- Conclusion of connection agreement;
- Construction of the gas distribution facility;
- Supply of natural gas.
The gas supply system is split into two networks and paragraph 1, points 8 and 9 of the Additional Provisions of the Energy Act (EA) provide definition thereto:
- Gas transmission network – is a system of gas pipelines of high pressure and the facilities to them, with a unified technological regime of operation, for transmission of natural gas to the outlet of the gas measuring station or gas regulation station.
- Gas distribution network – is a local or regional system of gas pipelines with high, medium or low pressure and the facilities to them for distribution of natural gas to the respective clients on a territory determined by a licence.
With regard to the connection to the gas distribution network, more detailed regulation is included in Ordinance No. 4 of 5 November 2013 on the connection to the gas transmission and gas distribution networks, issued by the Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (EWRC) (the “Ordinance”).
Who can connect and who can offer the service?
The owners and the persons to whom material right to construction or right to use a property is established may connect to the gas supply network. The gas supply service is provided by the respective network operators.
The connection procedure may be initiated by any natural person or legal entity in the following cases:
- Upon the construction of a new site, where a supply of natural gas is needed;
- Upon the construction of an industrial or a building-related gas installation in an existing site; or
- In case of an existing site already connected to a gas distribution network – where there is a need of increasing the supply of natural gas above the contracted quantities and in the presence of the pre-requisites provided for in art. 31, item 3 of the Ordinance.
The connection procedure starts with the submission of an application to the respective operator of gas distribution network. Information on licensed gas distribution operators is available on the website of the Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (EWRC).
What is the connection procedure?
Filing an application to connect to the gas distribution network
The contents of the application for connection of a site of a trader or a legal entity to the gas distribution network is set out in art. 32, para. 1 of the Ordinance, and para. 2 provides information as to the set of documents that have to be attached to the application:
- Certified copy of ownership document for limited material rights on the land plot or another right set by a special law for construction of the connected site on the land plot;
- The unified identification code (UIC);
- Certified copy of a permit for design, plan or drawing to set the location and purpose of the connected site;
- Declaration of consent for: the installation of the connection facility; allowing access to the connection facility to provide maintenance; establishing the right to construction in the name of the operator of the gas distribution network;
- Description of the gas utilising devices to be installed.
Within the phase of investment designing and permission of construction, on the grounds of art. 140а of the Spatial Development Act (SDA), the applicant may, together with the application for a design permit, request to be provided at the same time with the output data necessary for the design and for the connection to the technical infrastructure networks by the respective operating companies, on the basis of its described investment intention. In such case, the output data and terms of connection to the networks provided by the gas distribution operator, shall be enclosed to the design permit issued pursuant to art. 140а, para. 6 of the SDA.
Where connection of a respective industrial or building gas installation in sites constructed according to the output data provided as per art. 140а, para. 4 of the SDA is requested, the application has to be submitted pursuant to art. 35c (In Bulgarian: 35в) of the Ordinance, and it has to be accompanied by the same documents as those related to the application under art. 32, para. 2 of the Ordinance (as described above).
Survey and providing a written opinion as to the terms and conditions for the connection of the site
Pursuant to art. 34 of the Ordinance, once the application under art. 32 of the Ordinance is filed, the gas distribution network operator carries out a survey of the conditions for the connection and draws up a written opinion in respect to the terms and conditions for the connection of the site to the gas distribution network. The opinion sets out:
- The terms and conditions, method and point (location) of the connection;
- Proposed deadline for the connection by the gas distribution network operator;
- Prove of the regulatory admissibility of the connected site;
- The technical parameters and potential terms for the construction of the diversion and the connection facilities.
Pursuant to art. 35e (in Bulgarian: 35д) of the Ordinance, once the application under art. 35c (In Bulgarian: 35в) of the Ordinance is filed, carries out a survey of the conditions for connection of the site to the gas distribution network, including with regard to the compliance of the constructed site with the output data provided as per art. 140а, para. 4 of the SDA, and draws up written opinion, in which the terms and parameters specified above are set out.
Within 20 working days as of the filing of the connection application, the gas distribution network operator carries out the survey and notifies in writing the applicant for the results thereof, and provides either a consent for the connection, or refusal with stated reasoning. The notification is made by mail by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt or at the e-mail address provided by the applicant.
Art. 30, para 1 of the Ordinance provides information for the cases, including cases where a design permit under art. 140а, para. 6 of the SDA has entered into force, when the gas distribution network operator may refuse to connect an applicant, namely:
- When there is no available network capacity at the respective entry and / or exit point of the gas distribution network;
- When there is no connection to the gas distribution network and respectively, the required construction/reconstruction of the gas distribution network in relation to the connection is economically inappropriate and unjustified;
- When it is technically impossible to connect a site for the production of natural gas from renewable sources or entities having extractive operations;
- When the gas produced from renewable sources or entities having extractive operations does not meet the quality requirements set out in the provisions of art. 170, para 3 of the EA;
- When the sites to be connected do not meet the requirements of the ordinances under art. 200, paragraphs 1 and 2 of the EA, of the Ordinance and the terms set out in the Rules of Management and Technical Rules approved by the EWRC – until the remedy of the relevant cause.
Conclusion of connection agreement
The connection agreement is signed on the grounds of the connection survey caried out as per art. 34 or art. 35e (in Bulgarian: 35д) of the Ordinance.
In the case where the connection is based on a design permit under art. 140а, para. 6 of the SDA, which has entered into force, the connection agreement shall be signed no later than one year after the entry into force of the design permit, provided that the respective person has submitted for coordination and approval the investment designs within the same period.
In case of refusal to connect pronounced by the specific operator, the applicant may appeal this decision before the EWRC.
Construction of the gas distribution facility
|Important to know |
The construction of your own installations, which are to be connected to the gas distribution network, is your obligation and will be at your expense, while you have the right to select the designer and the contractor that will build the gas installation. You can also assign these activities to your natural gas supplier.
Supply of natural gas
The gas installation of the customer is fed with natural gas under the following conditions set out in art. 39, para 2 of the Ordinance:
- Filed written request by the customer to the gas distribution network operator for initial supply with natural gas;
- Issued and submitted to the gas distribution operator inspection book for the gas installation and permit for operation by the State Agency for Metrological and Technical Surveillance for facilities posing higher danger;
- Issued initial briefing certificate;
- Signed agreement for the sale of natural gas.
The fees for the various stages throughout the procedure for connection to the gas distribution network is specific for each operator providing the service.
Many of the deadlines in the procedure for connection to the gas distribution networks are set in the connection agreement and by the specific operator.
|For more information |
More information is available on the website of the Energy and Water Regulatory Commission.