Ukraine in Talks with EU to Maximize Electricity Imports, Minister Says 

German's Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks to Ukrainian minister of energy German Galushchenko during official visit to a thermal power plant which was destroyed by a Russian rocket attack in Ukraine, Monday, May 21, 2024. (AP)
German's Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks to Ukrainian minister of energy German Galushchenko during official visit to a thermal power plant which was destroyed by a Russian rocket attack in Ukraine, Monday, May 21, 2024. (AP)
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Ukraine in Talks with EU to Maximize Electricity Imports, Minister Says 

German's Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks to Ukrainian minister of energy German Galushchenko during official visit to a thermal power plant which was destroyed by a Russian rocket attack in Ukraine, Monday, May 21, 2024. (AP)
German's Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks to Ukrainian minister of energy German Galushchenko during official visit to a thermal power plant which was destroyed by a Russian rocket attack in Ukraine, Monday, May 21, 2024. (AP)

Ukraine is negotiating to maximize possible imports of electricity from European Union countries to compensate for the generation capacity destroyed by the Russian attacks, Ukrainian energy minister said on Friday.

Russian missile and drone attacks on Ukraine's energy sector have intensified since March, resulting in significant damage and blackouts in many regions.

The attacks have caused more than $1 billion of damage to the sector, leading to the loss of 8,000 MWh of generating capacity from the energy system, the government says.

Currently, Ukraine can import from the EU states no more than 1,700 Mwh of electricity simultaneously.

"We're negotiating. Our task is to maximize this figure," Energy Minister German Galushchenko told parliament.

"Technically, we can receive (import) more than 2,000 Mwh, even 2,400 Mwh. I'm sure a decision will be made," he added.

Volodymyr Kudrytskiy, the head of Ukraine's national power grid operator Ukrenergo, told Ukraine's Telegraf that 1,700 Mwh is "the ceiling for now".

"Everything will depend on how quickly our European colleagues - energy system operators of neighboring countries - will be able to implement projects to expand the capacity of their grids," Kudrytskiy said.

He said that European grid companies need time and money to reinforce some of their substations, install additional transformers or build new transmission lines.

"We think 3,500 to 4,000 Mwh of interstate interconnector capacity is something we can have in the horizon of five years," Kudrytskiy noted.

Energy minister Galushchenko did not say exactly how much imports are being discussed now, but Maxim Timchenko, the head of Ukraine's largest private energy company, DTEK, said earlier this month that an increase to 2,200 Mwh could significantly improve the situation.

DTEK has lost about 90% of its power generation capacity due to Russian missile attacks in recent months.

DTEK data showed that Ukraine consumed around 13,000 Mwh before the attacks as of March 17 but after a series of Russian attacks on the energy system, consumption fell to 9,100 Mwh.

Due to power shortages, Ukrainian power grid operator Ukrenergo has been forced to introduce regular shutdowns of industrial consumers and households and maintain high import rates.

Problems with power generation can have a "potentially negative impact" on industry, especially the largest electricity consumers, the economy ministry said this week.



Saudi Aramco, NextDecade Sign 20-year LNG Supply Deal

At the signing ceremony, from left: NextDecade Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Schatzman, Aramco Upstream President Nasir K. Al-Naimi, and Aramco Executive Vice President of Gas Abdulkarim Al-Ghamdi. Photo: Aramco website
At the signing ceremony, from left: NextDecade Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Schatzman, Aramco Upstream President Nasir K. Al-Naimi, and Aramco Executive Vice President of Gas Abdulkarim Al-Ghamdi. Photo: Aramco website
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Saudi Aramco, NextDecade Sign 20-year LNG Supply Deal

At the signing ceremony, from left: NextDecade Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Schatzman, Aramco Upstream President Nasir K. Al-Naimi, and Aramco Executive Vice President of Gas Abdulkarim Al-Ghamdi. Photo: Aramco website
At the signing ceremony, from left: NextDecade Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Schatzman, Aramco Upstream President Nasir K. Al-Naimi, and Aramco Executive Vice President of Gas Abdulkarim Al-Ghamdi. Photo: Aramco website

Saudi Aramco and US liquefied natural gas (LNG) provider NextDecade announced on Thursday that their respective subsidiaries have executed a non-binding Heads of Agreement (HoA) for a 20-year liquefied natural gas sale and purchase agreement (LNG SPA) for offtake from Train 4 at the Rio Grande LNG Facility at the Port of Brownsville, Texas.

Under the terms of the HoA, Aramco expects to purchase 1.2 million tons per annum (MTPA) of LNG for 20 years on a free-on-board basis at a price indexed to Henry Hub. Aramco and NextDecade are currently in the process of negotiating a binding agreement, and once executed, the effectiveness of which will be subject to a positive Final Investment Decision on Train 4.

"We look forward to finalizing the terms of a long-term LNG offtake agreement with NextDecade as we explore opportunities to expand our presence in international energy markets,” said Aramco Upstream President Nasir K. Al-Naimi.

“We expect LNG to play an important role in meeting the rising demand for secure and efficient energy,” he added.

NextDecade Chairman and CEO Matt Schatzman said: “We are pleased to have reached a Heads of Agreement with Aramco for LNG from Train 4, as Aramco seeks to expand its LNG portfolio. We look forward to finalizing the LNG SPA with Aramco and to pursuing other opportunities together.”