Excelerate Energy L.P. (Excelerate), Snam S.p.A (Snam) and Albgaz Sh.a (Albgaz) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), in Tirana, Albania, to explore potential cooperation for the construction of a natural gas pipeline from the Albanian Vlora Terminal to other natural gas infrastructure opportunities in Albania.
Under this MOU, Excelerate, Snam, and Albgaz will explore joint solutions, potentially supplying underground gas storage in Albania, providing crucial energy security to the region.
“Leveraging our downstream capabilities and working alongside Albania to explore expanding their access to reliable energy, we can take an integral step towards energy security for the country,” stated Steven Kobos, President and Chief Executive Officer of Excelerate. “Together with Snam and Albgaz, we recognize the potential impact this pipeline can have for the region.”
As the leader in floating LNG regasification solutions, Excelerate has delivered reliable, clean energy to markets across the globe, developing and operating 13 LNG terminals worldwide. This MOU is the latest example of Excelerate’s emphasis on greater integration of services for gas and power customers.
Snam is one of the largest energy infrastructure owners and operators globally and a leading shareholder in the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP). Snam and Albgaz’s Albanian Gas Service Company Sh. A, who maintains the gas transmission network in Albania, could potentially operate and maintain the future pipeline.
“This MOU further strengthens our commitment with Albania initiated four years ago,” said Mario Franchin, Senior Vice President Global Solutions Commercial at Snam. “It marks another important step forward in the development of Albania’s energy strategy, and Snam is pleased to share its experience and know-how to support the country and Albgaz in its path in the energy transition.”
Mr. Arber Avrami, CEO of Albgaz, underlined, “This is a unique opportunity for Albania, to cooperate with such big actors that can provide essential knowledge and experience to deliver benefits not only from gas transmission activities but also to exploit an important natural asset such as Dumrea underground gas storage. It can offer energy security options not only for Albania but also reliable energy supply for international gas networks.”
It is expected that planning will begin immediately when representatives of each company form a coordination group.
Earlier this year, Excelerate, along with ExxonMobil and The Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy, signed an MOU to conduct a feasibility study for the potential development of an LNG import terminal in the Port of Vlora in Southern Albania.
Notably, in early July, Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) AG., the Albanian Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy, and Albgaz Sh.a. signed a Cooperation and Handover Agreement on the Fier South Facility. TAP will design, procure and construct the Fier gas exit point, a multimillion Euro investment in the country.
According to the agreement, once the construction of the Fier South Facility is complete, the exit point will be handed over to the Albanian State and will be fully owned, managed, and operated by the government of Albania.
The new facility is a significant milestone for Albania’s gasification, as it will enable an interconnection point between the TAP transportation system and future gas infrastructure in Albania.
TAP transports natural gas from the giant Shah Deniz field in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea to Europe. The 878 km long pipeline connects with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) at the Turkish-Greek border in Kipoi, crosses Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea before coming ashore in Southern Italy.
TAP’s shareholders are BP (20%), SOCAR (20%), Snam S. p.A. (20%), Fluxys (19%), Enagás (16%), and Axpo (5%).