Israel, Lithuania may sign gas deal

Israel and Lithuania could strike up a gas deal as Israeli foreign minister visits the Baltic country.

Israel, Lithuania may sign gas deal

World Bulletin / News Desk

A two-day visit by the Israeli foreign minister to Lithuania on Wednesday could mark the beginning of an agreement by the two countries for Israel to supply gas to the Baltic country.

Lithuania, which currently imports all its natural gas from Russia, is trying to diversify its natural gas suppliers and Israel's gas fields could offer an alternative. Israel has proven natural gas reserves of 10.1 trillion cubic feet, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration. Israel started commercial production of natural gas from its Tamar field, near Haifa, in March last year.

As of next year, almost a quarter of Lithuania's total consumption will be met by Norway thanks to a liquefied natural gas (LNG) deal signed in August with Statoil and Lithuanian gas company Litgas.

The deal, valued at $1 billion, will see the Baltic country importing 0.54 billion cubic-meters (bcm) of natural gas per year.

Lithuania imported 2.7 billion cubic meters of natural gas from Russia last year and there won’t be significant changes in natural gas flows, according to Ambergrid, Lithuanian natural gas transmission system operator. All Lithuania's natural gas supplies are imported from Russia and the country imports them via Belarus and Latvia.

Lithuania is building a LNG terminal in Klaipeda, in the west of Lithuania, which will allow the country to transfer gas from Western countries and possibly from Israel.

During his visit, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman will meet with Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius and Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevicius.

The possiblity of Israel supplying gas to Lithuania was raised two years ago by Israel’s former Energy Minister Uzi Landau, according to Lithuanian President's press officer.

Other topics to be discussed will be Lithuanian-Israeli bilateral relations, prospects for their development, as well as relations with the European Union, issues related to the Middle East peace process, cooperation within international organizations, the Ministry said.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 12 Kasım 2014, 12:43