Romania, Hungary discuss ways to boost gas interconnector capacity

The foreign affairs ministers of Romania and Hungary discussed here on Tuesday ways to increase the interconnection capacity of the two countries’ gas distribution networks.

Access to energy is a major concern for both countries, Romania’s Foreign Minister Bodgan Aurescu told a joint press conference with his visiting Hungarian counterpart, Peter Szijjarto, emphasizing that “we must continue to increase our interconnection capacity … we must strengthen our storage capacity.”

Szijjarto said that Hungary’s aim was to increase the interconnector’s throughput capacity from 1.7 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year to over 3 billion cubic meters.

The interconnector can currently transport 2.6 billion cubic meters of gas per year to Romania and 1.7 billion cubic meters per year to Hungary.

According to Szijjarto, this increase in gas import capacity via Romania will strengthen Hungary’s security of supply and provide a route for possible future imports from Azerbaijan.

The two ministers also highlighted the importance of finding alternative energy sources focusing on renewable and nuclear energy.

Romania is less dependent on Russian energy sources. Its share of imports from Russia is currently 15.5 percent for natural gas and 37 percent for crude oil. Hungary imports about 85 percent of its gas and 65 percent of the oil it needs from Russia. ■

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