The Gas Value Chain Company

This section encompasses a wide range of GVC related information:

  • ‘Events’ captures activities such as speeches and moderations at conferences and symposiae and, moreover, the appearance at/participation in any such events.
  • ‘News’ captures all occurences relevant in the context of GVC’s business not qualifying as an ‘Event’ but worth sharing.
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Event

Washington, 6-7 June 2018

Wolfgang attends the ‘4th Washington Oil & Gas Forum 2018’ organized by ‘U.S. Energy Stream’ (www.usenergystream.com) in Washington, on 6-7 June 2018. It should be noted that GVC and U.S. Energy Stream have a cooperation agreement with GVC i.a. supporting U.S. Energy Stream as ‘knowledge partner’.

Wolfgang delivered one of the keynote speeches on day 1:Some (not so) Frequently Asked Questions about the European natural gas market’.

Given the venue of the conference, with a considerable number of speakers and participants from the U.S. including high-ranking members of the U.S. State Department, a central mission of the presentation was to explain and demonstrate the evolution of the European gas markets since the Ukrainian gas crisis in 2009 and clarify potential misperceptions, not least regarding concerns about Russian dependency. Read more

First, he pointed to the significant increase of import needs, which according to the IEA WEO 2017 would reach ~390 bcm/a, in the face of essentially flat demand but declining indigenous production. This should call for as much supplier competition as possible including LNG but also further pipeline gas, e.g. from Russia. Particular emphasis was put on the development of deep and liquid traded markets in Europe. E.g. in the Northwest-European markets hub indexation had reached 92 % in 2017. Noteworthy was a new analysis of the IGU on price formation of all Russian supplies into the German market, which feature 100% TTF correlation. This demonstrates that physical market share alone can be misleading and it is rather important how the receiving market treats volumes as to price formation. He further explained that U.S. LNG supplies needed price spreads between the American Henry Hub and e.g. the European TTF. The role of abundant destination flexible LNG operated like a ‘cap’ on the maximum achievable price of pipeline suppliers to Europe but permanent reliance on LNG would mean competing with Asia at significant higher price levels to the detriment of European consumers.
News

Oslo, 31 May 2018

Wolfgang attends the seminar ‘The Ukrainian-Russian gas dispute – Implications for Western Europe’, organized by law firm Wikborg Rein and Ukrainian Naftogaz in Oslo, 31 May 2018:

The seminar, by personal invitation only, featured high level representatives including e.g. the CEO of Naftogaz, Mr. Andriy Kobolyev. Mr. Dag Mjaaland, Lead Counsel for Naftogaz and ‘partner in charge’ at Wikborg Rein, gave Read more a comprehensive summary of the 2 complex arbitrations. Besides further contributions, a panel on the ‘pros and cons’ of Nordstream 2 engaged in partly highly emotional, controversial discussions. Wolfgang made several interventions strictly on gas economical facts only, such as the existence of a global gas market with destination flexible LNG operating essentially as a ‘cap’ on the maximum achievable price of pipeline suppliers, the subsequent re-definition of security of supply away from a regional to a global level and the underestimated future total import requirement of Europe, according to the IEA 390 bcm/a in 2040. He also pointed out that Naftogaz could, in the face of further rising Russian supplies to Europe, expect future transit business irrespective of new-built import pipelines.

Event

Amsterdam, 14-17 May 2018

Wolfgang chairs two panels at the ‘FLAME Gas Conference’ in Amsterdam, 15 and 16 May 2018:

First Panel (15 May): "Pipelines & Interconnectors: Europe cornered by supply?

Second Panel (16 May): "The Future of Midstream Gas & Utilities

The panelists of the first panel (Pipelines & Interconnectors) were Read more Reinhard Ontyd, Chief Commercial Officer, Nord Stream 2, Miroslav Bodnár, Member of the Board of Directors & Director of Strategy, EUStream, Andreas Rau, CEO, NET4GAS, Ana Stanič, Founder, E&A Law and Wouter Koopman, Shell.

Reinhard Ontyd joined the panel after having delivered a keynote speech on the status of the Nordstream 2 pipeline project. The lively but educated discussion was strongly focussed on the significantly rising European import demand and the shared concern that the emotional politicization around certain pipeline projects might in the long run endanger security of supply or at least lead to significantly elevated European price levels if Europe were to compete with Asia for LNG on a more permanent (as opposed to sporadic) basis. Wolfgang provided optical support by a number of illustrative slides.

The panelists of the second panel (The Future of Midstream Gas & Utilities) were Read more Ignacio de Aguirre, Head of Strategy, Gas Natural, Dieter Helm, Fellow, New College Oxford and Pierre Vergerio, Executive Vice President, Energy Management & Optimization, Edison.

A considerable part of the discussions was the insight that the German ‘Energiewende’ concept was, in terms of battling climate change by CO2 reductions, rather a showcase which mistakes to avoid and not a role model. The respective disposition of midstreamers and utilities e.g. on gas infrastructure investments was debated in depth. Wolfgang supported the discussions by exemplary slides on the status of the German ‘Energiewende’.
Event

Athens 3/4 May 2018

Wolfgang delivers a keynote speech at the ‘3rd International Conference of the Hellenic Association for Energy Economics’ in Athens, on 4 May 2018: "Gas Supply & Demand Dynamics: Pipelines and LNG” and moderates the respective panel with the same title.

Whilst the projected substantial growth in natural gas demand occurs elsewhere in the world, European gas demand is frequently underestimated (and the remaining level of indigenous production overestimated). E.g. the IEA, in its WEO 2017, Read more projects European demand essentially flat but sees a rising total import need of some 390 bcm/a by 2040. Hence, it appears advisable to encourage all manner of supply import aspirations, by both pipeline gas and LNG. Wolfgang points out once more the availability of destination flexible LNG responding to price signals operates like a ‘cap’ on the maximum achievable price for pipeline suppliers. At the same time, the volume pressure of abundant pipeline supplies keeps traded prices low and LNG (on a more permanent basis) mostly out.

Event

Florence, 9 April 2018

Wolfgang participates in a panel at the Policy Workshop: ‘The Renewable Gas Complex and the European Path to Decarbonization’ organized by the ‘European University Institute’ and the ‘Florence School of Regulation’ in Florence, on 9 April 2018.

The Policy Workshop covered a wide spectrum of aspects pertaining to the ‘renewable gas’ complex. I.a. Read more the biogas, biomethane and syngas value chain were presented and discussed, moreover the hydrogen, ‘green hydrogen’ and power-to-gas value chain. TSO and DSO representatives contributed by explaining the huge possibilities offered by the existing gas infrastructure, not least the ability to store, in large quantities and over extended periods of time, renewable power which would otherwise be ‘lost’ since curtailed at times of low demand.

Event

Nicosia 27/28 March 2018

Wolfgang delivers a keynote speech at the ‘9th Mediterranian Oil & Gas Forum 2018’ in Nicosia, on 27 March 2018: "The blessings of natural gas for Cyprus

With an additional promising natural gas discovery, Cyprus has moved one step closer to develop its resource for own use and export. Emphasis was therefore put on the positive effects for the domestic Cypriot market and its economy at large, ranging from significant CO2 reductions in the power generation sector Read more towards substantial savings to be expected in conjunction with the current import of oil products. The Cypriot ‘4th National Energy Efficiency Plan for Cyprus 2017’ was discussed and triggered stimulating exchanges.

Event

Brussels, 20 March 2018

Wolfgang attends the Eurogas Annual Conference: ‘Making mobility fit for the future – From roads to waterways’ in Brussels, on 20 March 2018.

The European Gas Industry Association Eurogas (www.eurogas.org) hosted its traditional Annual Conference. In an effort to foster stakeholder dialogue beyond the gas industry, the event was organized in cooperation with ‘NGVA’ (Natural & bio Gas Vehicle Association). Accordingly, the theme of the Conference was strongly focused on the deployment of natural gas in the transport sector. Read more

The contributions ranged from the use of ‘CNG’ (compressed natural gas) in passenger cars and LNG  in heavy duty trucking as well as maritime transportation. The huge potential of natural gas to contribute to battling climate change was emphasized and the limits of electrification were, at times controversially, discussed. Importantly, the participation of stakeholders from outside the gas industry, notably including Eurelectric, but also participants from the car industry such as Bosch and Volvo and various NGOs stimulated fruitful dialogue. A further laudable step away from having ‘gas people talk to gas people’ only.