VNG's Ulf Heitmueller envisages an LNG purchasing «boom» driven by German energy firms searching for a resolution to «security of supply difficulties», with Russia currently accounting for 40% of national gas consumption.
He thinks the shock to the market will prompt VNG to seek more renewable sources of electricity, accelerating the energy transition.
VNG, headquartered in Leipzig, is majority owned by Germany utility EnBW, which revealed early plans to buy an additional 3 bln m3/year of LNG on March 31.
- Russian gas will lose in importance for VNG and the much-discussed bridging period for gas to usher in a carbon-free energy future will become shorter
A German utility industry association said on April 1 that Germany could replace around 50% of its Russian gas quantities by the end of this year.
It has 3 LNG terminal projects in early development that could help in the medium term.
But Germany's need for gas may also increase in coming years, as the country shuts down its baseload nuclear and coal power plants.
The country's 3 remaining nuclear stations, with a total 9,500 MW capacity, will close later this year and Berlin aims to gradually phase out coal-fired electricity by 2038.