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Russia to remain largest supplier of natural gas to Europe

November 29, 2011, 19:41 UTC+3

Russia will retain the role of a key supplier of natural gas to Europe after the completion of the process of energy resources diversification

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SOPOT, Poland, November 29 (Itar-Tass) — Russia will retain the role of a key supplier of natural gas to Europe after the completion of the process of energy resources diversification, Jan Chadam, the chief executive of the Polish company Gaz-System, which operates the Polish section of the Yamal pipline, told Itar-Tass Tuesday.

He is taking part in the 6th Energy Forum underway here.

"We believe the deliveries of Russian natural gas will be the main energy resource for Poland," Chadam said. "Yamal will be the main pipeline and the key element of the mechanism of gas transportation from the East."

"Nothing will change in this sense," he said. "Our forecasts suggest that the consuption of gas in Poland will grow considerably, as we foresee the emergence of new major consumers."

"By 2020, consumption is expected to stay between 17 billion cubic meters and 20 billion cubic meters, or one-third more than today." Chaddam said, adding that there will be no way doing without Russian gas.

"Along with this, it's not at all surprising that Poland, like any other country, would like to have an opportunity to purchase gas from various sources but this doesn't mean any radical changes in the direction of supplies," he said.

On the reverse mode of operation of the Yamal pipeline, Chadam said this operating pattern was introduced earlier in Movember.

"Reverse operations are needed, in the first place, to enable us to use the pipeline in the situation of an emergency if gas stops flowing in from the East and its transportation in the opposite direction will be needed," he said.

According to Chadam, the physical startup of the reserve patterns will be possible in 2014, since its effectuation requires supplementary investment in Germany. He made it clear, however, that the enactment of reverse patterns might be needed in critical situations only.

Gaz-System is implementing a large-scale project that aims to diversify the sources of energy in Central and Eastern Europe.

"Forecasts put Europe's demand for natural gas at 621 billion cubic meters by 2030, and that's why it's necessary to use broadly the existing opportunities and to work towards an increase of the number of gas transition methods and sources," he said.

As the key aspects of this activity, Chadam named the setting up of the North-South corridor from Poland to Croatia, the integration of the energy markets of Scandinavia, Poland and Central Europe, and the unification of gas infrastructures of regional countries.

He believes that the market of gas in Central Europe will be fully integrated by 2017.

In the light of these plans, Poland pins big hopes on the commissioning of a liquefied natural gas terminal in Swinouscie, which is under construction now.

Construction works at the site of the second storage facility, which is 40 meters tall, will be over in three days' time, and the whole terminal will be ready for commissioning in 2014.

"It will have a capability to change the market of gas in our part of Europe very considerably," Chadam said.


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