Europe’s Dependence on Russian Gas Will Grow

Europe’s Dependence on Russian Gas Will GrowEurope’s Dependence on Russian Gas Will Grow

Europe’s dependence on imports of Russian gas will only grow, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said in an interview with the Rossiiskaya Gazeta daily to be published on Monday.

"Expert estimates of possible consumption reveal that gas consumption in Europe will grow as its economy is reviving. According to our estimates, Europe will consume an extra of about 100 billion cubic meters of gas. And its dependence on gas imports will grow as its own production is going down," he said when asked about prospects of Russian gas exports to Europe, TASS reported.

The minister said it was one of the reasons why the issue of the construction of two more threads of the Nord Stream gas pipeline with a projected capacity of 55 billion cubic meters had become topical again.

Gazprom is building a global strategic alliance with energy major Royal Dutch Shell that will include asset swaps and allow the Russian gas giant to penetrate new markets, its chief executive told Reuters.

Gazprom, the world's top gas producer, said on Thursday that Shell and its long-time gas buyers in Europe—Germany's E.ON and Austria's OMV—had agreed to build two new Nord Stream gas pipelines under the Baltic Sea to Germany.

The project includes two parallel lines. The first line of the pipeline was laid by May 2011 and was inaugurated on 8 November 2011. The second line was laid in 2011–12 and was inaugurated on 8 October 2012. At 1,222 kilometers in length, it is the longest sub-sea pipeline in the world.