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Russia, Bulgaria, Greece, Sign Trans-Balkans Oil Route Agreement

Russia, Bulgaria and Greece have signed an agreement on a project for delivering Caspian Sea oil to the Aegean.

Cabinet ministers from the three countries signed the agreement Tuesday in Sofia, Bulgaria. They said the project will focus on a pipeline, costing at least $677 million, that will allow Russia to avoid shipping too much of its oil through Turkey's busy Bosphorus Strait.

Officials say tankers from Russia will deliver the oil to Bulgaria's Black Sea port of Burgas, from where the 285-kilometer pipeline will carry it to the Greek port of Alexandroupolis on the Aegean Sea.

The parties say their governments will not finance the project. Instead, they say they will create a company that will seek bids from private firms interested in participating.

Some information for this report provided by AP and AFP.