2019.05.30 12:20

Lithuania denies importing Gazprom LNG from Kaliningrad

BNS 2019.05.30 12:20

Lithuania does not import liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Kaliningrad, where Russia completed the construction of an LNG import facility early in 2019, Lithuanian LNG handling and importing businesses told BNS. 

They commented on a statement by a top executive of Russia's gas giant Gazprom, who said the group is launching LNG exports from Kaliningrad to Lithuania.  

"Gas from the Kaliningrad region has never been and is not being supplied to the Klaipėda LNG terminal," Orinta Barkauskaite, spokeswoman for Klaipėdos Nafta, the Lithuanian LNG terminal's operator, told BNS. 

Artūras Ketlerius, head of public relations at Lietuvos Energija, which purchases most of its LNG from Norway's Equinor, also told BNS that the state-owned energy group is not importing LNG from Kaliningrad and has no information about that.  

Unofficial sources say the Kaliningrad terminal is actually standing idle. 

Interfax has recently cited Gazprom Deputy CEO Vitaly Markelov as saying the group is starting to supply LNG from Kaliningrad to Lithuania. 

"As planned, the Marshal Vasilyevsky floating regasification plant is starting to export gas, supplying it at present not just to the Kaliningrad region but also to the terminal in Klaipėda," Markelov wrote in the Gas Industry journal. He is the journal's editor-in-chief. 

Lithuania's fertilizer manufacturer Achema, the country's single largest gas consumer, imports gas of Novatek, Russia's biggest privately-owned gas producer, from Russia' s Baltic Sea port of Vysotsk. 

Read more: Lithuania bought gas from Russian giant Novatek, possibly breaking sanctions 

Lietuvos Energijos Tiekimas (LET), a subsidiary of Lietuvos Energija, also took delivery of a small Novatek gas cargo this spring.  

Gazprom's Kaliningrad LNG terminal was officially launched in early January. 

According to the Russian media, the facility should not only ensure the supply of gas to the exclave in case of any disruptions in pipelined gas transit via Lithuania, but should also help supply LNG cargoes to customers in the Baltic Sea region.