Poland books Lithuanian gas transfer amid Russian cuts
Poland may receive up to two million cubic metres of natural gas a day from the Lithuanian gas terminal in Klaipeda through a new Poland-Lithuania pipeline, securing supplies for Poland after Russian gas giant Gazprom turned off the tap.
Gazprom cut gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria from Wednesday owing to the two countries' non-compliance with a Russian decree stating that the so-called "hostile countries", or most Western nations that oppose the Russian invasion of Ukraine, should now be paying for Russian gas in roubles.
Poland's gas infrastructure operator Gaz-System booked a daily capacity of up to two million cubic metres of gas from Lithuania on Thursday and expects the supplies to start in May.
The 522-kilometre Gas Interconnection Poland–Lithuania (GIPL), co-funded by the EU, is near its completion. In February 2022, Amber Grid, Gaz-System's Lithuanian counterpart, announced that the commercial operation of the pipeline will start on May 1, with limited capacity.
The pipeline's target capacity will be 2.5 billion cubic metres towards Lithuania and 2 billion cubic metres towards Poland, but it will remain limited until the end of September, at 2 billion cubic metres towards Lithuania and 1.9 billion cubic metres towards Poland.
Poland is close to reaching full independence from Russian gas thanks to an enlargement of its Liquefied Natural Gas terminal on the Baltic Sea coast and a new pipeline that will soon pump natural gas from Norwegian shelf deposits to Poland. The Lithuanian pipeline is yet another element of the country's strategic gas independence plan.