Polish Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State Assets Jacek Sasin has assured that the pipeline delivering natural gas from Norway to Poland will begin functioning in Oct. 1, 2022 and will achieve its full capacity within the next year.
Sasin told Polish Radio 1 on Thursday that independently from the Baltic Pipe, Poland has access to other sources of gas than Russia. He reminded listeners that in recent times the volume of Russian gas on the Polish market constituted to 45-46 percent of total gas consumption.
On Wednesday, Gazprom cut off gas supplies to Poland under the Yamal contract, with Poland’s refusal to pay for Russian gas in rubles reportedly the reason for the drastic action taken by the Russian company.
According to Sasin, Poland had already prepared for such a scenario. “That is why we intensively created other connections, so-called reverses with Czechia, Slovakia and earlier, Germany. This allows us to acquire gas from those directions,” said the Polish deputy prime minister.
He reminded listeners that from the beginning of May a connection with Lithuania will be created. “It will allow us to import gas through the port in Klaipeda,” said Sasin, and pointed out that PGNiG – Polish Oil Mining and Gas Extraction S.A., had bought a volume of 2 billion cubic meters.
He stated that Poland could look calmly into the future when it considers 4-4.5 billion cubic meters of national extraction, gas that can be imported through the LPG terminal in Świnoujście from the U.S. and from the Persian Gulf. In total, Poland needs about 20 billion cubic meters of gas yearly.
Sasin explained that national storage of gas, “if we assume that we use this gas only,” will last for approximately six weeks. He stressed that it will be used for supplementing the imported and extracted gas. According to Sasin, Polish storage of energy supplies is at a record-high for the entire EU. “The EU average is slightly above 31 percent,” he evaluated.
The Polish minister highlighted that PGNiG also bought deposits in Norway. “It is more than 2 billion cubic meters. There, such extraction is possible with delivery to Poland,” he said.
The funds for the purchases of those deposits came from the fine that PGNiG managed to obtain from Gazprom for overpricing gas for Poland in previous years, with Sasin adding: “It could be said that to some extent the money from Gazprom was used in building the energetic independence from Gazprom.”
The Baltic Pipe will create a new route of natural gas deliveries from Norway to the Danish and Polish market and to end-users in neighboring countries. The pipeline will provide 10 billion cubic meters of natural gas to Poland and 3 billion cubic meters to Denmark. The investors are transmission system operators, Danish Energinet and Polish Gaz-System.