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March 29, 2023

Romania likely to export gas as of H2 2013

Natural gas export from Romania to EU states will become possible starting the second half of next year, but it will not be physically made via pipelines, but through ‘backhaul,’ a procedure that allows virtual exchanges, the president of the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority (ANRE), Nicolae Havrilet announced. According to Havrilet, the first backhaul transaction is scheduled for March next year, when Transgaz will hold a tender for the transport of 50,000 cubic meters of gas a day through its own network, for a company outside Romania that buys Romanian gas which it sells on the local market, Mediafax reports. Accordingly, a Romanian company can conduct a similar operation on any market of the EU.Transgaz may also award the contract on the ‘first come, first served’ basis, Havrilet added. Romania has only one connection for the transport of gas with countries of the European Union, with Hungary, on the Arad-Szeged route, but this only allows gas imports, for now. According to the ANRE official, backhaul transactions will be used for small quantities of gas, 300-400 million cubic metres a year, depending on the physical interconnection capacity.The gas exports in 2013 are among the obligations assumed by Romania towards the IMF and the European Commission (EC). In October, the EC launched the infringement procedure against Romania because it does not ensure the export of gas. According to Havrilet, one may expect that the infringement procedure is stopped once Romania implements the possibility of cross-border gas exchanges via backhaul contracts.The main gas producers based in Romania are state-run company Romgaz Medias and OMV Petrom (SNP), part of Austrian group OMV. The two companies secure approximately two thirds of the gas demand, with the difference being imported mostly from the Russian Federation.

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