U.S. LNG Exports: A Game-Changer for Europe?
On Tuesday, 15 April 2014, the Warsaw office of the German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) organized a roundtable discussion on “U.S. LNG Exports: a Game-changer for Europe?” The event featured remarks by Neil Brown, GMF non-Resident Fellow, and Bartosz Wiśniewski, Market Analyst of United Oilfield Services. The Director of GMF Warsaw office, Michał Baranowski, moderated the debate focusing on the importance of U.S. gas supplies to Europe.
It was stated that the U.S. can play an important role as an energy supplier to Europe. Having in mind the energy dependence of Europe on Russia and the crisis in Ukraine, the U.S. gas supplies could increase competition and diversify the European energy market. Some issues of concern were also raised at the meeting, including climate policy, and the need to determine specific guidelines for defining and choosing energy projects of strategic importance. It was mentioned that the U.S. LNG supplies won’t be as large as energy exports from Russia, but they are part of the solution and of a broader energy strategy for Europe. Poland and its neighbors should maintain stronger regional cooperation, and taking into consideration the strong propaganda led by Russia, Europe should work to sway public opinion, in particularly in Eastern Europe, to more favorable attitudes towards exports of shale gas from the U.S.- The participants of the debate underscored the need for sufficient infrastructure for U.S. LNG exports to Europe, but were overall in agreement that the United States would be a reliable partner who could help diversify the energy market in Europe.