BAKU, Azerbaijan, April 21. Europe’s huge appetite for liquified natural gas (LNG) will create real challenges for other importers, Ben Cahill, Senior Fellow, Energy Security and Climate Change Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) told Trend.
“The current EU plan is to look for 50 bcm in LNG supplies by end-2022. This is obviously a huge task and it seems unachievable by year’s end. Europe is now the top destination for US LNG, and more is flowing from Egypt and other suppliers. Heading into next winter, the huge appetite for LNG in Europe and the resulting high prices will create real challenges for other LNG importers like China, Japan, and South Korea, as well as emerging and less wealthy LNG buyers like Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Thailand. It's a tight market and that means high LNG prices for probably years to come,” said Cahill.
The expert believes that total curtailment of Russian gas imports in Europe seems unlikely.
“If this happened, people would be left in the cold without gas heating, utilities would have to ration gas, and the economic impact would be huge. It seems more likely that policymakers will ratchet up pressure through oil sanctions. It’s possible that governments will conclude the current sanctions aren’t creating enough economic pressure on Russia, and they will want to do more. We are not there yet. But EU policymakers seem to be considering payments into an escrow account to deny Russia funds for the time being, or perhaps a tariff on Russian crude and products. On the gas side, a full disruption of imports from Russia (which still seems unlikely) would be impossible to counteract,” he added.
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