As a representative of a key player in European gas transmission, how would you define the continent’s major challenges in this field? Key challenges in the current European midstream market lie in dealing with continuous changes in the patterns of natural gas flow, in reaction to the commissioning of largescale projects like Nord Stream. A very important step in this process was, inter-alia, implementation of the physical reverse flow possibilities in the countries in Central Europe, which currently, enables natural gas to be delivered to Southern Europe, via the Nord Stream and OPAL pipelines, utilising physical reverse flow, via the Czech and Slovak systems, or reverse flow deliveries to Ukraine. Possibilities of this kind are still not available in the Balkan region, which faces high import dependency on a single natural gas source and transmission route. High dependency on such a level is certainly the biggest problem of the natural gas segment of the SEE countries. Security of gas and energy supplies is high on the European agenda. What steps – in terms of legislation – should be undertaken to achieve considerable progress in this matter? After the natural gas crisis in 2009, security of energy supplies became the key priority of the EU’s energy policy. Focus is applied, mainly to the development of new infrastructure, which is able to enhance energy security, in the most impacted regions. In this respect, EU legislation, oriented on identification and support of Projects of Common Interest is very helpful, however, we are of the opinion, that legislation should be stricter, to prohibit development of infrastructure, which is aimed at the bypassing of [...]
The EU, Ukraine and Russia recently signed a binding short-term protocol for winter that confirms Russian gas deliveries to Ukraine. At stake is Ukraine’s and Europe’s energy security. The Chief Executive Officer of Naftogaz, Andryi Kobolyev, shared with the CEEP team his insights on the brokered deal and what this means for the EU, Ukraine and Russia and what steps need to be taken in the future. CEEP: What’s the exact situation on the ground and what does the signed deal change? Andryi Kobolyev (AC): The situation remains challenging. Russian troops have occupied coal producing territories in southern Donbass, as well as the gas producing region of Crimea. The infrastructure connecting the coal mines in the East with the rest of the country has been deliberately destroyed making Russia the only destination for this fuel. This puts an additional strain on Ukraine’s energy needs and financial requirements this winter. Ukraine’s government has introduced a number of emergency measures to control demand, like setting up limits for industrial consumers and launching financial assistance programmes for energy efficiency projects for households. There is also a massive information campaign for energy efficiency in the country. In addition, tariffs for households have been raised promoting energy saving, although they still do not reflect the market level. We are yet to see the results, but we can say that the consumption levels are falling, even in the regions not affected by the invasion. Notably, we are witnessing that households have started cutting their gas consumption for the first time in years. With the Brussels deal, Naftogaz has secured a security-based supply of gas which [...]
In a few words
We represent the widely understood Central Europe energy sector (electricity generation, distribution and transmission, renewables, gas, oil, heat generation and distribution, chemical industries, etc.), universities and scientific institutions.