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Romania eyeing Israeli gas & renewable energy innovation

Romania remains significantly dependent on Russian crude oil, while the imports of natural gas are critical during the cold winter period

Romania eyeing Israeli gas & renewable energy innovation

Jerusalem, April 19 - Neftegaz.RU. Romanian Energy Minister Virgil Popescu visited Israel last week for meetings dedicated to cooperation between the 2 countries in the field of energy.
On the top of his agenda was the discussion of Romania’s importing Israeli gas and Israeli innovations in renewable energy.

In an interview with The Jerusalem Post, Popescu elaborated on the possibilities surrounding bilateral collaboration.
He said:
  • There is large potential for cooperation between Romania and Israel in the energy field
  • We want to meet with companies that are willing to invest in Romania and to talk about renewables
  • We have to buy gas, because the main issue for the next week is reduction of dependence on Russian gas
Russia has increased the price of its gas exports in recent weeks, which has led to growing pressure for importing nations to find alternative sources of natural gas.
Romania is currently exploring several options, one of which is Israel.

Such a deal would be very beneficial for both sides, and maybe even surrounding nations, as Romania is responsible for a gas pipeline to Moldova, which links the latter nation to the greater European power grid.

Popescu met with executives from Delek and other leading energy providers in order to explore the logistics of transferring gas to Romania.
He said:
  • The problem that we have to solve is the infrastructure of transport
  • Pipelines cannot be done so easily or quickly, so the solution is via Egypt
  • There are [gas] terminals there, and there is close cooperation between Israel and Egypt
A gas terminal is currently being built in the Mediterranean Sea that will enable wider export of gas from Israel.
Once it is finished, the terminal will likely play a role in any potential long-term deal with Romania.
Popescu said:
  • We want to replace fossil fuels
  • When I spoke with the minister, I told her about the mix of electricity in Romania
  • We have almost 20% coal, almost 8% gas, almost 20% nuclear, and the remaining 40% is hydro and renewables
  • We want to phase out coal by 2032 and use gas as a transitional fuel
Israel is useful to Romania for more than just its natural gas.
Popescu also visited the Israel Export Institute, where he met with several companies and discussed the huge potential of hydrogen energy solutions in Romania’s future.

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