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17 Aug, 2017 12:25

America can’t substitute Russian gas in Europe even if it ships it for free - diplomat

America can’t substitute Russian gas in Europe even if it ships it for free - diplomat

The United States will most likely fail to oust Russia as the main supplier of gas to Europe, according to the Russian envoy to the European Union Vladimir Chizhov.

"And if even Americans supplied liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe free of charge, they simply would not have had enough opportunity to replace Russian supplies," Chizhov said in an interview with Sputnik radio.

The envoy suggests three reasons why the US cannot replace Russian gas supplies.

"In the United States there is currently a single export terminal for LNG shipments in Louisiana, they plan to build another half-dozen terminals in different parts of the country, but this will take time,” Chizhov said.

“Second, the amount of gas produced in the United States may not be enough for the European market,” he added.

The third reason is that Europe does not have enough terminals to receive LNG or tankers for its transportation, said the Russian diplomat.

Over the last year, the US has increased LNG supplies to Europe. However, it now has only six percent of European LNG imports, which doesn't take into account natural gas supplies through pipelines.

Royal Dutch Shell and BP have confirmed Russia would continue to be Europe's top gas supplier at least through 2035.

The Russian share of the European gas market increased to 34 percent last year, according to Gazprom.

Europe also imported 24 percent from Norway, 13 percent came in LNG supplies, and 11 percent from Algeria.