Qatar Reportedly has Little Spare Capacity for EU amid US Search for Alternatives to Russian Gas

On Tuesday, Biden press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters that the Biden administration was “working to identify additional volumes of gas” for Europe from North Africa, the Middle East, Asia and the United States in the event of a drop in Russian supplies amid the Ukraine crisis.
Qatar has little spare gas capacity to reroute to Europe, and would need assistance from Washington to persuade its existing customers to reroute LNG supplies to America’s allies if Russian supplies were disrupted, a source said to be familiar with negotiations has told Reuters.
The gas rerouting issue is expected to be broached in the upcoming meeting between President Biden and Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani on 31 January.
The US State Department raised the issue of finding alternatives to Russia – which provides roughly 40 percent of Europe’s natural gas, in the event that Russian gas supplies to the region are interrupted due to an escalation of the Ukraine conflict. Earlier this month, energy companies told US officials that replacing Russian gas supplies would be next to impossible given Russia’s immense weight in the global gas market.
On Tuesday, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said that the Biden administration was “engaging with a range of countries and partners to discuss what could be shortages” of Russian gas supplies -including those transiting through Ukraine.
Psaki said that Washington was searching for sources of additional supplies of gas from North Africa, the Middle East, Asia and the United States itself, and that US officials were “in discussion with major natural gas producers around the globe to understand their capacity and willingness to temporarily surge natural gas output and to allocate these volumes to European buyers.”
The spokeswoman did not go into detail about which countries specifically the US was talking to on the matter.

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