The third vice president and minister for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera, travels to Algeria this Wednesday to ensure that the gas supply to Spain will be metAccording to sources in the sector, despite the diplomatic crisis between this country and neighboring Morocco, where until now part of the Algerian gas destined for the peninsula passed.
After fulfilling his schedule in the Maghreb country, of which no further details have emerged, Ribera will attend the media at 6:00 p.m.
The trip comes after the Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, José Manuel Albares, reiterated this Monday having received guarantees from Algeria that the supply of gas to Spain will be fulfilled despite having broken relations with Rabat.
What’s more, stressed that during his visit to Algiers on September 30, his Algerian interlocutors, including the president, Abdelmayid Tebune, this was conveyed to him and his counterpart, Ramtane Lamamra, reiterated it to him last week when they saw each other at an international conference in Tripoli.
Algeria is the main supplier of natural gas for Spain, a good part of which was transported until now via Morocco, through the Maghreb-Europe gas pipeline. However, as a result of the rupture of relations between the two neighboring countries announced by Algiers on August 24, the Algerian Government revealed that the supply would now be made through the Medgaz gas pipeline, which links the North African country with Spain.
Naturgy and the Algerian Sonatrach agreed in July to start operating the Medgaz expansion in the fourth quarter of this year, which will allow 25% of the natural gas consumed in Spain to be transported and will strengthen the strategic relationship between both companies.
Regarding the Maghreb-Europe gas pipeline, which channels Algerian gas through Morocco and which the African country plans to close next Sunday, October 31, became operational in November 1996, so this year marks the 25th anniversary of the inauguration of this work, which it has become one of the main entry points for gas in Spain.
Algeria has said that it will expand the capacity of the Medgaz gas pipeline, but experts warn that if it encounters technical problems, this could put Spain in trouble on the eve of winter and with the price of gas going through the roof, according to experts from the sector.
Enegás assigns more slots
In this sense, Albares has stressed on several occasions that “there are many ways to transport gas” to Spain as liquefied natural gas (LNG). Specifically, Enagás, as the Technical Manager of the Gas System (GTS), has awarded 23 additional slots for the next 12 months in the second extraordinary auction of slots for the unloading of liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers at the terminals regasification of the Spanish gas system.
These 23 slots are in addition to the 22 awarded in the extraordinary auction held in September. Thus, with these two auctions, a total of 45 additional slots have been assigned to those initially planned for the next 12 months.
The slots are capacity windows for the unloading of liquefied natural gas (LNG) ships at regasification plants.
These extraordinary auctions are part of the measures being taken “out of prudence and prevention” in the context of volatility in world natural gas markets with the aim of making the maximum available to companies that bring natural gas to Spain capacity to promote LNG discharges in the country’s regasification plants.
The objective of this strategy is contribute with all possible measures to the guarantee of energy supply, as explained by the company chaired by Antonio Llardén.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.