The transformation of the natural gas market in the Baltic States and Central Europe: Has LNG become a game-changer?
16 May 2017, 4 - 8 PM CET
TUSIAD Avenue des Gaulois 13, Brussels 1040
We tend to hear much in Brussels about the new LNG projects in Poland and the Baltic States. In particular, much of the focus is on the Commission and the governments in these countries hailing these projects as a "game-changer" in their efforts to break the long-standing grip that Gazprom has over our security of supply of natural gas.
LNG projects in the Baltic region fit well into the EU Energy Union initiative in that they contribute to the strategy of diversification of the gas supply. Indeed, some results have been achieved — Lithuania has achieved a substantial discount from Gazprom following the commissioning of its new LNG terminal.
But how much do we really know about these projects? To what degree are they transforming the natural gas markets in Central Europe and the Baltics, ie, moving these towards more competition, more flexibility and ease in the trading of the blue fuel, and towards a more liquid market overall? What role have subsidies and state-aid played in their development? The unanswered questions continue.
The bigger picture of global gas trading is pointing us towards the conclusion that LNG, if not having yet arrived on the scene, is well and truly arriving. While pipelines remain the dominant mode of delivery of natural gas, global gas volumes delivered by LNG tankers are rising substantially and rather rapidly. More projects are coming on stream, more tankers are traversing the shipping lanes and more terminals are being built.
Once again, the question of our gas markets leaves us with much to ponder. With this in mind, we hope you enjoyed this BREC meeting where Andrei Belyi helped us understand how LNG in the Baltics and Central Europe fits into this bigger picture, and to what degree it is becoming a game changer in the transformation of the gas markets in the region itself.
Program May 16, 2017: 16.00 — 20.00:
Setting out the debate by Dr Marat Terterov, Brussels Energy Club
Presentation by Professor Andrei Belyi, University of Eastern Finland, starting at 16.20
Roundtable discussion with meeting participants (NB: the Chatham House Rule will apply).
Our traditional networking reception with gala buffet will follow the main discussions
Associate Professor, University of Eastern Finland, Project Researcher on gas markets, the Academy of Finland, Estonia-based consultant for his own firm Balesene OÜ