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Polish Gas Firm To Wean Itself Off Russian Gas After 2022

Polish Oil and Gas Company (PGNiG) doesn’t expect it would be “forced” to buy gas from Russia after its supply deal with Gazprom expires at the end of next year, PGNiG’s chief executive officer Pawel Majewski told Reuters in an interview published on Friday.

Poland has been trying for years to shake off its dependence on Russian gas as it considers Russia’s energy policy a threat to energy security.  

“We assume that after 2022 we will not be forced to buy gas from Gazprom. This is our strategy. That is why we are diversifying gas supplies to Poland - to ensure energy security,” PGNiG’s Majewski told Reuters.

The top executive didn’t rule out spot purchases from the Russian gas giant in the future.

Aiming to cut its dependence on Russia, PGNiG has signed in recent years several long-term contracts for the delivery of liquefied natural gas with major LNG exporters such as Qatar and the United States.

PGNiG has a 24-year contract with U.S. Cheniere for LNG deliveries which began in 2019, and a strategic agreement with Qatar for LNG supply until 2034.

Poland, as well as PGNiG, have been vehemently opposing the controversial Gazprom-led natural gas pipeline project Nord Stream 2, which awaits an operational license from German authorities to begin shipping gas to Europe, bypassing Ukraine.

PGNiG and PGNiG Supply & Trading (PST) have presented their position to the German energy ministry regarding the certification procedure of Nord Stream 2, the Polish company said on Thursday.

“Both companies underlined the risks for security of gas supplies to the European Union resulting from launching of this pipeline,” PGNiG said.

“Current situation on the European Union gas market proves the scale of the risks for security of supplies created by Nord Stream 2 project,” Majewski said in a statement.

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“Suggestions that additional gas supplies are possible only through Nord Stream 2 are the manifestation of pressure on the certification procedure and prove that the project is aimed at bypassing the traditional transit routes. Since there are spare capacities of the existing pipelines, there is no need for Nord Stream 2 to increase gas supplies to the EU Member States,” he added.

By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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