Poland: The Norwegian Corridor
a better alternative for CEE gas industry
The project will ultimately consist of four main sections:
the so-called repository pipeline leading from the production sites on the Norwegian shelf to the delivery point on the north coast of Denmark,
the land pipeline which is the part of the Danish transmission system leading to the gas compressor station on Zealand,
an offshore interconnector running through the Baltic Sea to the receiving terminal in Poland (the Baltic Pipe),
the Polish section with a possible extension to the south, towards the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary.
The investment will be conducted jointly by national gas network operators from Denmark (the company Energinet.dk) and Poland (the company Gaz-System). Final business decisions are to be made by the end of 2018 and the first agreements are expected to be concluded in 2019. The Baltic Pipe would be put into operation in 2022. According to the feasibility study, the project will be profitable, the capacity of the pipeline being 10 billion m3 of gas per year.
The leading Polish gas producer, the company PGNiG, holds shares in 19 extraction licences in the North Sea and generates approximately 0.5 billion m3 of hydrocarbons annually. In January 2017, both the PGNiG and another Polish fuel tycoon, the company LOTOS, obtained seven new licences on the Norwegian shelf. The management boards of the above entities have announced that their annual gas production is expected to reach 2.5 to 3 billion m3 by 2022. Launching the Baltic Pipe would additionally enable hydrocarbons to be purchased directly from the Scandinavian producers.
The Norwegian Corridor is another investment aimed at strengthening Polish energy security since the opening of the LNG terminal in Świnoujście. Piotr Naimski, the Polish government’s plenipotentiary for strategic energy infrastructure, commented: “If the project goes ahead, we could seriously think about creating an important gas hub in Poland. Our goal is to diversify the energy fuels supplies at the expense of imports from Russia. In the future, it will also bring considerable benefits to our partners in Central-Eastern Europe.”