Mediterranean region boosts gas infrastructure

MEDREG, the Association of Mediterranean Energy Regulators, has released a new report on Gas Infrastructure Map of the Mediterranean Region on May 3 based on data collected from 14 Mediterranean countries.

According to MEDREG, which brings together 25 regulators from 21 countries, spanning the EU, the Balkans and North Africa, the report provides a picture of the gas infrastructure including interconnection points, cross border transmission pipelines, liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage capacities, usage of the capacities and future investment plans across MEDREG members.

This Gas Infrastructure Map report shows the actual infrastructure present in the Mediterranean region and potential infrastructure developments in the natural gas transmission systems under several future natural gas demand scenarios, MEDREG said in a press release, adding that the report also includes infrastructure maps of Croatia, Cyprus, France, Jordan, Malta, Spain, Turkey.

According to MEDREG, the analysis indicates that most countries regulate third party access to LNG terminals and storage facilities as well as the entry and the exit points, with the exception of Egypt, Jordan and Italy. The existing and planned infrastructure projects reflect the interest in LNG projects, particularly in floating storage and regasification units (FSRUs).

The report also unveils the driving forces behind infrastructure investments. MEDREG regulators seek security of supply, market development and regional market integration when investing in interconnections and LNG facilities.

In terms of barriers affecting the investment plans, MEDREG Members indicated the insufficient market demand as the biggest one, followed by the financial feasibility of the projects and the expected revenues. Countries that are newly starting or have recently started to regulate the gas markets, such as Jordan, Israel and Egypt, MEDREG said, also consider regulatory and legal obstacles.

When comparing the pipeline lengths of the selected members with benchmarked EU countries, the annual consumptions per length of transmission pipeline differs greatly, MEDREG said. The leader among MEDREG countries with respect to unit consumption per network length is Jordan with 8 mcm/km, followed by the UK and Egypt, which can be considered as having efficient transmission systems.

Looking at LNG and storage capacities versus demand, Spain, Portugal, Italy and France are the most secure countries to respond to peak demand and crisis, while Turkey and Egypt have the lowest send-out/peak demand ratios.

With this study, MEDREG aims to pave the way for better communication and cooperation between the neighbouring countries, and may update it in the future, given the considerable recent developments witnessed in the infrastructure investments, particularly with regard to LNG terminals and Floating Storage Regasification Units (FSRUs), as well as the fluctuations in the demand structures.


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