19 November, 2013

EU Commission rewards LNG project in Sweden

Two projects in Sweden have been considered sufficiently important to merit inclusion in the EU list of infrastructure projects that are of common interest for the European Union (PCI, Project of Common Interest). One of the projects is the LNG Terminal in Gothenburg that Swedegas and Vopak plan to build in collaboration with the Port of Gothenburg. The project satisfies the criteria laid down by the Commission: it will contribute to market integration and further competition, it will enhance security of supply and it will reduce CO2 emissions.

"The Commission is focusing on infrastructural investments in preparation for the European Union's adjustment to renewable energy sources," says Lars Gustafsson, CEO of Swedegas. "We are extremely pleased that our project has acquired this status."

Increased interest in infrastructural investments
A simplified permit-granting process and financial support are two potential benefits for the PCI project. When the announcement was made, European Commissioner for Energy Günther Oettinger spoke about the need to attract investment in a modern energy infrastructure. The EU has estimated that infrastructural investments totalling EUR 200 billion are required to achieve the energy and climate goals for 2020. The PCI process is a means of highlighting and rewarding projects that "give customers value for money in an integrated market".

The Swedish Energy Market Inspectorate and other regulatory bodies in the EU have been involved in evaluating the different projects. The first PCI list to be published by the European Commission includes around 250 energy infrastructure projects that the Commission has chosen to achieve an integrated market in a variety of sectors, including electricity and gas. 

Collaboration with Rotterdam
The LNG Terminal in Gothenburg is also part of a project being run together with Port of Rotterdam and Gasunie to create an efficient LNG infrastructure between Sweden and the Netherlands. The project recently received EUR 34 million in EU funding in the form of a TEN-T grant in order to develop an infrastructure that will facilitate cleaner transport at sea.

One of the primary aims of the LNG Terminal is to meet the stricter EU sulphur emission requirements that will be imposed on shipping. The Terminal is scheduled for completion in 2015.

For further information, contact Saila Horttanainen, Vice President Corporate Communications, Swedegas, +46 70-622 76 06.

Fact file

Project of Common Interest
The European Commission has adopted a list of 248 key energy infrastructure projects. These projects have been selected by twelve regional groups established under the new guidelines for a trans-European energy infrastructure (TEN-E). Carrying the label 'Projects of Common Interest' (PCI) they will benefit from faster and more efficient permit-granting procedures and improved regulatory treatment. They could also have access to financial support from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF).
For a project to be included in the list, it must have significant benefits for at least two Member States, contribute to market integration and further competition, enhance security of supply, and reduce CO2 emissions. The list of PCIs will be updated every two years.

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