HOUSTON (Sputnik) – Greece has received a couple of liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments from the United States over the past two months, George Stathakis, Greek minister of environment and energy, told Sputnik on Wednesday, on the sidelines of the CERAWeek by IHS Markit energy conference, which is currently underway in the US city of Houston.
“We got a couple of shipments in the last two months. That was based on short term contracts, spot market. We were happy that we [have] new sources as well”, Stathakis said.
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When asked whether any new shipments were planned, the minister said that he had no idea, stressing that this was a “commercial issue.”
The Greek Environment and Energy Ministry said in a statement in mid-December that Greece had agreed with the United States on LNG shipments, with the first batch of LNG set to amount to 150,000 cubic meters (5.3 million cubic feet). The ministry’s December announcement coincided with the start of the first Greek-US Strategic Dialogue forum in Washington. On December 30, Greece got its first shipment of LNG from the United States.
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras first announced that Athens intended to purchase LNG from the United States during his meeting with US President Donald Trump in October 2017.
Nord Stream 2
Stathakis also noted that the European Union should treat all projects equally, including the Nord Stream 2.
“We have argued that the EU will tackle all the projects in Europe on equal terms with equal treatment. And that refers to way out for finding a solution to the Nord Stream 2,” Stathakis said on the sidelines of the CERAWeek by IHS Markit conference.
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The Nord Stream 2 project is a joint venture of Gazprom and five European companies: France’s ENGIE, Austria’s OMV, British-Dutch Royal Dutch Shell, and Germany’s Uniper and Wintershall.
The project has long drawn opposition from a number of countries, especially Ukraine, which claims that Moscow plans to deprive Kiev of its gas transition revenues. The US, which is trying to sell more of its own liquefied natural gas to its overseas allies, insists that the project will make Europe dependent on Moscow. Both Russia and Germany have repeatedly rebuffed the claims.