EastMet not to replace Nord Stream 2
EastMed, a mixed offshore/onshore Israeli, Cypriot and Greek natural gas pipeline designed to connect gas resources in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea to continental Europe via Greece may be the perfect U.S. response to claims that the sanctions legislation currently making its way through Congress would deprive Europe of much-needed energy resources, German's Junge Welt has reported.
The talks on the alternative project attended by representatives of Greece, the U.S., Cyprus and Israel were held Athens on August 7.
With the conference, Junge Welt argued, “the new Greek government reaffirms its rapprochement with Israel, and offers Washington the opportunity to present an alternative to the hotly contested Baltic Sea-based Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline.”
Accordingly, EastMed, a 1,900 km pipeline with a capacity to bring some 10 billion cubic meters per year to southern Europe from offshore gas reserves in the Levantine Basin, may very well offer the ‘viable alternative’ Europe needs, “but only after 2025,” Junge Welt added. Its cost is around $7 billion.
According to Reuters, the Nord Stream 2 project could be delayed by up to eight months and cost an extra 660 million euros ($740 million) due to hurdles in securing the necessary permits from Denmark. The initial budget was 9.5 billion euros.
The executive vice-president of NewTech Services, professor of the Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas, Valery Bessel, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, in the first place noted that nothing will derail the Nord Stream 2.
"There are three major economic centers in the world - China, the European Union and the United States. The U.S. is absolutely self-sufficient in the issue of energy resources. As for China and the EU, Russia is their only reliable and sustainable source of hydrocarbons. Today they also receive hydrocarbons from the countries of Africa and the Persian Gulf states, but everyone understands that the situation is not calm there,” the expert noted.
According to him, all those projects that the United States is offering now will be implemented in the distant future. At the same time, he emphasized that if there was any kind of delay, then Western countries would suffer the most.
In addition, speaking about the prospects of the EastMed pipeline, he drew attention to the fact that this project is not able to become an alternative to Nord Stream-2. "According to BP's statistical report, Israel produces 10 billion cubic meters of gas. One cannot count on such a pipeline because it can stop working in the next 2-4 years," the expert explained.
In addition, he pointed out that today there are no significant reserves either in Israeli or in Cyprus. "There are reserves that can satisfy the needs of these countries for 10-15 years, but if we talk about the needs of the EU, which is about 500 billion cubic meters of gas per year, then, of course, they need reserves like in Iran or Russia "But Iran is currently under sanctions, so Russia is the most reliable supplier. Thus, this news is nothing but a hoax," Valery Bessel summed up.