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Algerian Gas Supplies to Secure French Demand

February 28, 2022

The Spanish authorities intend to pump quantities of Algerian gas over the next two months to secure French supplies in light of the global gas crisis and Russian military operations in Ukraine, in addition to diverting liquefied gas tankers from Algeria to European countries if there will be a shortage of supplies.

Spanish media, quoting government sources, reported that the Ministry of Environmental Transformation announced Madrid’s readiness to supply gas to European countries in light of the current crisis following the Russian military operations in Ukraine, asserting that the first beneficiary of this process would be France, which would benefit from what looks like a rescue and a guarantee of its supplies for two months.

The Spanish “Economia Digital” website, which specializes in economic and energy news, said that Spain is in great comfort compared to other European countries in terms of gas supplies, adding that the pipeline that brings Algerian gas is operating normally and expansion works are underway to increase its capabilities.

The Madrid government intends to supply France in the next two months with quantities of Algerian natural gas through two small pipelines that cross from the Basque and Navarre regions towards southwest France and can transport 1 billion cubic meters of Algerian gas to Spain.

It is known that the French authorities have always issued a veto against linking it to Spain via large gas pipelines, and according to a former senior official source in Sonatrach, the French veto against linking it to large gas pipelines with Spain has been going on since 1984.

The Spanish website, Economy Digital, quoted Teresa Ribera, Minister of Environmental Transformation, as saying that Madrid also intends to buy additional quantities of liquefied gas from Algeria via ships and transfer it to other European countries in there will be a shortage of supplies due to the war in Ukraine.

On the Italian side, gas consumption data of 2021 published by local media indicated that Algeria almost doubled its supplies to this country, and the quantities moved from 12 billion cubic meters in 2020, to 21.16 billion cubic meters in 2021, which represents 28.4%, compared to 29.06 billion cubic meters of Russian exports to Italy with a share of 37.8%.

According to monthly consumption data of January 2022, Algeria has surpassed Russia as the first supplier of gas to Italy, with exports amounting to 1.5 billion cubic meters compared to 1.2 billion cubic meters of Russian exports.