Poland’s PGNiG signs MoU to drill for gas in Ukraine
Polish energy giant PGNiG says it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Ukrainian oil and gas company Naftogaz to work together in drilling for hydrocarbons and producing gas in that country.
Photo:Photo: PAP/Leszek Szymański
The team-up is expected to focus on an area where the Polish state-owned company has already been producing natural gas for more than 70 years, PGNiG said in a statement on Tuesday.
Its deputy CEO and Chief Operating Officer Robert Perkowski was quoted as saying that Ukraine „has one of the largest gas reserves in Europe” and „offers a very attractive growth potential for upstream companies like PGNiG.”
„We are particularly interested in gas production development in Western Ukraine, the region bordering to the area where we have already been producing natural gas for several decades,” Perkowski said, as cited in English.
He added that potential cooperation between the two companies could lead to increasing natural gas production in the western part of Ukraine.
That would be beneficial for the development of both companies „as well as for strengthening energy security in Central and Eastern Europe,” Perkowski said.
Otto Waterlander, Chief Operating Officer of the Naftogaz Group, said:”By attracting international partners, we intensify the pace of releasing Ukraine’s resource potential.”
He added, as quoted on pgnig.pl website, that PGNiG „is a public company with high standards and a successful track record of exploration and production activities both in Poland and abroad.”
In particular, he said, PGNiG „has proven achievements in the region bordering the Ukrainian part of the Carpathians.”
„I am confident that together we will be able to achieve mutually beneficial synergy that will contribute to Naftogaz’s strategic goal–to help Ukraine achieve energy independence within the next 10 years by driving its natural gas production volumes,” Waterlander also said.
The announcement of the team-up comes on the heels of a report latelast year that PGNiG was seeking to export more gas to neighboring Ukraine, while also eyeing extraction and storage opportunities in that country.
Poland’s PGNiG and Energy Resources of Ukraine at the end of 2019 struck a deal to work together in drilling for and extracting gas from deposits that straddle the Polish-Ukrainian border.
The latest memorandum of understanding with Ukraine’s Naftogaz comes at a time when Poland is working intensely to reduce its dependence on Russia for gas.
Poland’s PGNiG said in November 2019 it would not renew a long-term deal on gas imports with Russia’s Gazprom when the contract expires at the end of 2022.