Estonia’s Eesti Gaas secures winter LNG supplies from Norway’s Equinor

Eesti Gas, a part of Estonian investment firm Infortar, said it has purchased liquefied natural gas supplies for the upcoming winter season from Norway’s Equinor, the operator of the Hammerfest LNG export plant.

According to a statement by Eesti Gas on Tuesday, the firm bought 2 TWh of LNG, or about two cargoes, for delivery in October and November at Lithuania’s FSRU-based Klaipeda LNG import facility.

The firm said this would “significantly increase” Estonia’s security of supply in the upcoming heating season.

It did not provide the price tag of the deal but local media reports suggest Eesti Gas would pay about 300 million euros ($300.2 million) for the supplies.

Eesti Gas also did not say from where the supplies would come. Equinor would likely ship the fuel to Klaipeda from its 4.3 mtpa Hammerfest LNG export plant on the island of Melkoya.

This facility started exporting LNG again in June this year after a fire broke out at the plant in September 2020.

Eesti Gas to continue buying LNG

Eesti Gaas, which is branded internationally as Elenger, said it has purchased three LNG cargoes from Poland’s dominant gas firm and LNG player, PGNiG, in recent months.

The firm said that two LNG tankers arrived in Klaipeda from the United States at the beginning of May and early June, and one from Norway at the end of June.

These deliveries would ensure customers’ gas supply until autumn, while the new contract with Equinor would cover gas consumption throughout the heating season, Eesti Gaas said.

Eesti Gaas offers customers natural gas in the form of pipeline gas, CNG, LNG, and manages Estonia’s largest gas network. It also operates in Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland under the Elenger brand name.

Margus Kaasik, chairman of the Eesti Gaas board, said in the statement this new contract with Equinor “is one of the biggest deals ever for Eesti Gaas”.

Kaasik said the firm would continue to procure the next LNG quantities into the new year.

“The price of gas will likely be high in the upcoming winter, but looking a little further ahead, the transition to LNG and the establishment of new supply chains will eventually bring calm to the market with lower and more stable prices,” he said.

Estonia currently has no LNG import terminals but Alexela and Infortar are working on the FSRU-based Paldiski LNG facility along with Elering.

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