The end of the policy of the gas blackmail

Many Polish companies, including our powerful chemical industry, dependent on Russian gas, because, in simple terms, they were at the end point coming from the East pipeline. They were doomed to suffer from geopolitical shocks, the whims of the Kremlin, or turns in the relations between Germany and Russia. Now, after Donald trump endorsed sanctions against the project “Nord stream — 2”, all this will be history.

However, we have no reason to sing the victorious hymns, or to take in the Polish-centeredness, because of the American sanctions are global in nature. Still the world gas market was divided on a regional basis. Poland (of course, due to the fact that raw materials are supplied by pipeline) were located in the area of Russian producers, and, more specifically, Gazprom. In such market conditions dictate the manufacturer, as buyers were deprived of alternatives. In this regard, prices in long-term contracts (as in the case of Poland) were tied to prices of oil, which can not grow, by definition, due to the continuing development of the automotive industry and threatening in the future from the increased value of production on more remote fields. The terms of these contracts were forbidden to resell the gas and was required to pay even the raw material that has not been obtained. The robbery in broad daylight! But that’s not all.

The most terrible — gas blackmail frosty winters. Such episodes have occurred regularly during the negotiations on the gas price before signing the next long-term contracts. The last time this happened in January 2009 when Ukraine and several Central European countries were cut off from supplies. Suffered including Polish industry, especially chemical companies who had this blackmail to limit production.

Since then, the situation has turned 180 degrees. Sanctions, which are approved by Donald trump, will be only the last chord. We are witnessing the formation of a powerful world market of liquefied natural gas. LNG is stored at a temperature of minus 160°C, since during the condensation the volume of gas is reduced 630 times.

Thanks to the advent of industrial technology of LNG transportation by sea from the producer to the buyer, located anywhere in the world, has become a cost-effective, and regionalization of the gas market lost its right to exist. Liquefied natural gas can be bought at market price (“spot price”), which in recent years has decreased in eight times. In addition, it can be purchased at any time depending on needs.

Curiously, Russia to blame in this situation in the first place… China. That never agreed on prices that differ from market, and especially on their reference to oil quotations. In addition, recently, Beijing with the United States signed the Treaty on long-term deliveries of us liquefied natural gas.

In Europe, the amazing tenacity of Germany. Its cooperation with Putin’s Russia, it’s hard to comment. Such a policy is amazingly short-sighted. France quickly realized that the sale of the Moscow transport ships after the annexation of Crimea will undermine the cohesion of the European Union. Meanwhile, the failed deal was a trifle compared with the geopolitical consequences that might result from the construction of the second branch of the pipeline “Nord stream” if Ukraine will lose transit of gas to Europe, it will be just left to the mercy of Russia.