Ironically, the tiny but ambitious and dynamic, Qatar is the main competitor of Russia in world energy markets.While Moscow, sinking into the international political and technical problems, build pipelines, which were to allow it to solve the problems with transit countries, Doha has created sweeping the entire world network of terminals for liquefied natural gas (LNG) and formed the largest specialized fleet of 54 vessels.
About stuck at the stage of negotiations, “South Stream” keep silent, but the Russian gas that goes to Europe on the “Nord Stream”, and in China and other Asian countries on the ESPO under construction, will meet in those markets most serious competition from Qatar.
In 2010, the emirate has put 55.7 million tons of LNG to 23 countries. In 2011 – 77 million tons by the end of 2012 plans to sell 120 million tons. 23% of EU gas consumption has Qatari origin. During the eight years of production and export of LNG in Qatar grew by six times, and five-year plan involves the development of its economy to invest more than $ 96 billion in deposits and the expansion of processing facilities, while maintaining a caretaker as a series of major gas fields.
Isolated from the land of Saudi Arabia, which at one time cut off from his UAE, Qatar was forced to concentrate on the manufacture and export of LNG and is now independent of the neighbor-rival. And its partners Exxon Mobil and British Petroleum have the most advanced technology liquefaction.
Growing market Qatari gas is Europe. In Asia, the number of his clients are India, China, Malaysia, Pakistan, South Korea and Japan. In North America – USA and Canada. In South America, from 2011 – Argentina and Brazil (Petrobras).
Competing in the EU with the Algerian and Egyptian gas, the main pressure on the emirate has a Russian “Gazprom”, pushing it even on the traditional markets such as Italy and Poland, where the LNG will begin in 2013. Active negotiations on the export of Qatari gas to the Baltic countries, Ukraine and Belarus. In Asia Qatari liquefied natural gas – a competitor of Russian LNG produced on Sakhalin and the Far East.
Russian politicians have believed in vain that the creation of the so-called ”Gas OPEC” (Forum countries – exporters of natural gas) will be the basis of alliance of gas producers, who will be able to dictate its conditions to consumers the benefit of all market players. For Qatar, the whole point of this organization limited to the location of its headquarters in Doha, and the possibility of imitation in its framework for collective action, which allows competitors to divert attention from its offensive against their interests. At a red herring like and discussion about the emirate’s investment in the project “Yamal LNG.” While the economic cooperation of Qatar and Russia costavlyaet less than $ 20 million per year. And if Russia is open for cooperation, the presence of Russian business in Qatar is extremely complicated.
The rapid expansion of Qatar’s terminal network, dumping, and the transition from the spot to supply medium-and long-term contracts do not give a reason for the optimistic estimates of the possibilities for harmonizing Russian and Qatari gas strategy. Geography of Qatar LNG terminals covers the UK, continental Europe, the U.S. (only one Golden Pass terminal on the Gulf Coast has a capacity of 15.6 million tonnes of LNG per year), Latin America, the Middle East.
Requirements of European companies that rely on the Qatari dumping, the decline in prices for Russian gas complicate the situation of “Gazprom”, especially since the transition to long-term transactions Qatar neutralized the main traditional advantage of Russia. A precedent was a three-year contract for $ 3.25 billion signed in 2011 between Qatargas and the British company Centrica, to supply the last 2.4 million tons of LNG annually.
Described above – a reflection of the strategy, which adheres to the emirate in relations with Moscow for a long time. Support fur coat Afghan mujahideen in the 1980s gave way to the support of the Chechen separatists in the 1990s. The elimination of the territory of Qatar Zelimkhan (February of 2004) made the Emir Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani and Prime Minister Hamad bin Dzhassema Ben Jabra Al-Thani, the Russian leadership to demonstrate a change in course, but this period is over.
“Arab Spring”, with the participation of Qatar broke the most secular regimes in the Arab world, has strengthened alliance Doha to Paris, London and Washington, allowing the Emir be a leader worldwide. Cooperation with NATO in Libya, supported by the presence of more than four thousand U.S. military personnel at RAF “Al-Udeid,” guarantee its security. As a consequence of differences with Moscow on Syria caused not only an anti-Russian campaign of the Qatari “Al Jazeera” and fatwas head of the World Union of Muslim theologians, Youssef al-Qaradawi, but beating the Russian ambassador in the capital’s airport. Against this backdrop, what can we say about the competition in energy markets.
April 6 00:05 | Newspaper № 252 (252) | Yevgeny Satanovsky
|Source - The Moscow News
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