Romania has enough gas for winter: PM
Romanian prime minister Nicolae Ciuca believes his country has sourced enough gas supply to last through the winter demand season, with national storage facilities now 70% full.
Ciuca said in a live statement: "At the moment, we continue to pump in gas in our warehouses, and we have managed to fill them to 70% of capacity, which is very encouraging." Gas Infrastructure Europe's data shows Romania currently has 22.8 TWh of gas in storage, equal to about 20% of its annual consumption.
The EU is demanding all member states reach 80% capacity by November 1 to avert major disruption to gas systems if Gazprom further curtails Nord Stream, and to reduce the strain on national budgets, with spot prices already soaring to unprecedented levels.
Energy minister Virgil Popescu expects that by September Romania will have sufficient gas to fill 80% of national capacity, two months ahead of the EU's requirement.
Romania is also in a stronger position ahead of winter than many European peers ahead as Russia supplies relatively little of its gas. Just 30% of its supply comes from Gazprom, versus 55% that Germany imported before the Ukraine war, and 100% in neighbouring Moldova.
Romania produced 8.7bn m3 of gas from its own onshore reserves in 2020, according to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy. Production has been falling in recent years as 90% of gas supplies come from onshore fields heading towards depletion, with many of these run by Austro-Romanian player OMV Petrom.
Romania is also looking to expand offshore gas production in the Black Sea, further enhancing its energy security. London-listed Black Sea Oil & Gas formally launched its Midia gas project in the Black Sea in June, set to produce around 1bn m3/yr or enough to meet around 10% of national gas demand. Pending a positive final investment decision, the offshore Neptun Deep project by OMV Petrom and Romgaz should follow suit by 2026.