What will be the role of LNG in EU energy market, for long therm – among others, this is one of the main question of the future, and one of main topic of Budapest Energy Summit as well. We asked Anita Orban, vice president of international affairs of Tellurian about that. You can hear her at the event too, she is one of our top speaker.
– How do you see the current role of LNG in the EU energy market?
– European LNG demand grew by 16% in 2017 and 13% of the US LNG cargoes landed in Europe last year. LNG has been part of the European supply for decades now, some countries rely on it extensively – e.g. Portugal, Spain, UK – while LNG is not part of the energy mix in other parts of Europe – Czech Republic, Switzerland, Austria to name a few. However, one of the new entrants in the LNG market recently has been Malta, which became a new buyer last year. Cyprus is progressing with its plans of a regasification terminal and the LNG discussions gained a new momentum in Germany with 3 terminal plans on the table. More and more countries recognize the benefits of LNG compared to pipeline gas, mostly the flexibility and optionality it offers. Some European majors are also among the leading LNG players globally, taking advantage of LNG not only in the European but also in their global markets.
– What do you think about the perspectives of LNG here in CEE region?
– LNG in the CEE region is a tremendous success story. Lithuania received substantial discount from its traditional supplier as soon as LNG became a reality. Today the share of LNG and pipeline gas is about half and half in the Lithuanian gas supply. Poland found the impact of LNG on its domestic and regional market so beneficial that PGNiG booked the entire capacity of the terminal and there is a decision to enlarge its capacity even further. The Swinoujsce terminal was utilized about 60% last year and over 1500 LNG trucks loaded in Swinoujsce, making the Polish LNG terminal the largest reloading port in Europe. I believe that a terminal in Krk could create the same impact for the Croatia-Hungary region as the above terminals did in Northern Central Europe.
– Can LNG, or actually the natgas compete with renewables in the low carbon age?
– Natural gas is the best friend of renewables. It is the cleanest of the fossil fuels and a good supplement to address the intermittency problems. Studies prove that if we just replaced coal with gas, it would be enough for Europe to meet its 2030 targets, i.e. gas is part of the solution, not a problem.