Ukraine considering the possibility of buying liquefied gas from Qatar
Ukraine is continuing to study the prospects for the purchase of Qatar's liquefied gas. This issue, according to the Ukrainian Presidential Press Service, President Petro Poroshenko discussed this topic in discussions with the Emir of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.
"President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko met with Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani... The interlocutors discussed prospects for the Qatari liquefied natural gas (LNG) to enter the Ukrainian market," the report said.
There is no re-gasification terminal for liquefied gas in Ukraine, but deliveries can be made through pipelines at the Polish LNG terminal in Świnoujście.
President Petro Poroshenko made comments to the media that Ukraine is considering using this terminal to import Qatari gas.
"We will hold negotiations toward this direction in the near future. And once again, we will return to a possible Turkish route through the Bosporus, [in which] we [would] also have unique opportunities to improve our energy security and ensure the supply of liquefied gas from Qatar," Poroshenko said.
The route through Turkey had been under consideration during the tenure of Viktor Yanukovych; however, the Ukrainian government was unable to obtain permission from Ankara for the passage of liquefied gas tankers through the Bosporus at the time.
There are about two dozen countries globally that export liquefied natural gas (LNG). The largest of these is Qatar, which, as of 2016, accounted for 32% of the world's LNG trade. Qatar is also the leading supplier of LNG to Europe. During conditions of gas trade liberalization, Qatar became a leader in spot and short-term deals on natural gas supplies. In 2014, the Emirate exported up to 23% on spot contracts to various markets. The Middle Eastern state could conclude profitable deals on the sale of free gas capacities at high exchange rates and receive additional profit.
Modern technologies and easier extraction of Qatari gas make its cost price lower than gas from Russia.
Qatar could also potentially compete with Gazprom in Europe, but some factors currently prevent it from doing so. In particular, Qatar's intention to build a gas pipeline to Europe via Syria has been postponed indefinitely due to military and political instability in the country.