Gas Matters Today | news roundup | w/c 05 September 2022

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North America

US – US shale player Devon Energy is set to enter the LNG sector after penning a heads of agreement (HoA) with floating liquefaction developer Delfin Midstream. Devon is expected to be the first of many shale firms to enter the LNG sector in a bid to capitalise on higher prices.

Uniper and JERA have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the supply of blue and green ammonia sourced from a US Gulf project to be jointly developed by JERA and ConocoPhillips. JERA and Uniper, which are also planning to collaborate on LNG imports, say they are targeting a supply agreement for 2 mtpa of green and blue ammonia, to be produced on the US Gulf Coast, with possible expansion to 8 mtpa. 


Australia – Struggling German utility Uniper last Monday signed a second LNG sales and purchase agreement (SPA) with Australia’s Woodside Energy, with first deliveries due in January at the height of the coming winter. The deal comes just days after Uniper said it had already burned through the EUR 9 billion (USD 8.9 billion) credit facility granted by the German government in July and was therefore seeking another EUR 4 billion “to secure the company’s short-term liquidity”.


Netherlands – The Netherlands’ latest LNG import terminal in the port of Eemshaven is urgently gearing up to flow gas into the national grid, following the arrival of two FSRUs and a cargo of LNG from the US last week. EemsEnergyTerminal, a subsidiary of Gasunie, is a major part of the Netherlands’ strategy to become independent of Russian gas and to assist its neighbours, notably Germany, in doing so.

European nations are implementing further measures to address soaring energy costs. Germany has announced a EUR 65 billion (USD 64.5 billion) energy package to be funded by a windfall tax on energy companies while the UK’s new Prime Minister Liz Truss is reportedly considering a freeze on energy bills.

Nord Stream 1 flows will only resume at full capacity when Western sanctions against Russia are lifted, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov was quoted as saying last Monday. Peskov’s comments come after Gazprom failed to return NS1 flows on Saturday following a three-day maintenance period, with the Russian firm citing an oil leak. 

Energy ministers from the 27 EU member states will consider two options proposed by the European Commission (EC) to tackle high energy prices as part of an emergency package to be discussed in Brussels last Friday. Price caps for electricity produced by plants with lower fuel costs or separating the market price of gas from the electricity produced are the options under consideration.

The European Commission’s president Ursula von der Leyen last Wednesday outlined five main proposals to tackle the energy crisis that was discussed by ministers at last Friday’s extraordinary meeting in the Council of the EU. Among the proposals are capping the import price of Russian gas and capping energy companies’ extraordinary profits, however von der Leyen did not rule out that price caps on LNG imports may also become necessary.

EU energy ministers have, following an extraordinary Council meeting in Brussels last Friday, asked the European Commission (EC) to come forward with a set of proposals next week to tackle the extreme price volatility in energy markets. The proposals will cover areas including price caps on gas imports, ‘solidarity contributions’ from oil and gas companies to vulnerable consumers and coordinated power demand reduction during peak hours.

North Africa

Algeria – Eni has acquired BP’s upstream business in Algeria for an undisclosed sum, including two gas–producing concessions in the southern Sahara, the companies have announced. Eni says the acquisition will contribute to supply security in Europe and that the deal supports its plans for ramping up gas production in Algeria. 


Spanish energy company Repsol last week progressed its clean energy ambitions by selling 25% of its upstream oil and gas business to EIG, a US-based energy and infrastructure investment fund. The transaction, foreshadowed in media reports last June, will enable Repsol to boost investment in its renewable electricity generation, renewable fuels and circular economy businesses.

Russia & CIS Region

Russia – Novatek, one of the world’s largest LNG producers, has emerged as the only Russian company that meets criteria set by the government to take over the 27.5% stake in the Sakhalin 2 project held by Shell, which has stated its intention to withdraw because of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

State-owned majors China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and Gazprom have signed several supplemental agreements to support their February agreement of 10 Bcm/year of Russian gas supply to China from 2023, including a deal to settle gas payments in rubles and yuan. Moreover, observers anticipate a significant step-up in bilateral energy relations this week, when Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping will meet in Uzbekistan, including progress on the proposed Power of Siberia 2 (POS-2) pipeline.


The UK’s new Prime Minister Liz Truss has announced last week a set of measures to tackle high energy prices for households and to increase domestic energy supply, including the controversial measure to lift a moratorium on fracking. But while Truss has emphasised the importance of increasing domestic energy supply, some observers doubt that abolishing the fracking moratorium will deliver any short-term relief.

The UK’s largest shale gas acreage holder Ineos has renewed its offer to drill a shale gas test well to prove the firm can do it “safely” and “without harm to the environment.” The announcement comes hot on the heels of the UK’s new Prime Minister Liz Truss announcing the government would abolish a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, a move that has drawn strong criticism from green groups.

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