US LNG firm’s Balkan plans via Greece

US LNG firm’s Balkan plans via Greece

US firm Cheniere Energy is seeking to cooperate with Greece’s Public Gas Corporation (DEPA) and find a way into the Balkans through the country for American gas, with prospects including Ukraine too.

The company’s strategy in Greece and the broader region was presented on Wednesday in Athens by Senior Vice President International Jean Abiteboul, following contacts with Energy Minister Panos Skourletis and the DEPA management.

Abiteboul confirmed Cheniere Energy’s interest in utilizing the plan for the installation of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal off Alexandroupoli, in Thrace, by Gastrade (controlled by the Copelouzos group). He also confirmed Cheniere’s interest in gas exports to Greece via the Revythousa terminal.

The Cheniere official said the Alexandroupoli terminal could evolve into a regional gas hub for the markets of Greece, Bulgaria, Serbia and even Turkey, with prospects of expanding its reach to Ukraine via Romania. He added that a vital condition for the realization of the project is the construction of the Greek-Bulgarian IGB pipeline and the signing of contracts with gas buyers.

He also referred to the sizable and cheap US shale gas reserves that will hit the international market early next year, saying, “Your country and the region that rely on one supplier, Gazprom, is a good market for us.”

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