Greece and Bulgaria on Wednesday signed a deal to build a multi-billion-euro rail link which is expected to compliment a major gas interconnector project between the two counties.
The line will link the ports of Kavala and Alexandroupoli in northern Greece on the Aegean Sea with Bulgaria's Burgas, Varna and Port Ruse on the Danube River.
According to Bulgarian media the Bulgarian section will cost roughly €1 billion ($1.2 billion) and the Greek part about €4 billion ($4.7 billion). No timescale for the completion of the project was given.
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his Bulgarian counterpart Boyko Borisov spoke at a news conference in Kavala after the signing a memorandum of understanding.
"With the Bulgarian prime minister, we are in a common line to capitalize on the potential of the two countries,” the Greek premier said, adding that the energy sector is opening new horizons in Europe with the implementation of the IGB pipeline.
The Gas Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria will link the natural-gas systems of both states, with an entry point in Komotini, Greece and exiting in the city of Stara Zagora, Bulgaria.
The European Commission is expected to decide early in 2018 if it will grant €51 million ($60.8 million) in additional funding. Both Greece and Bulgaria have requested extra resources to complete the gas project.