Almost 50 per cent of planned works of the gas pipeline link GIPL – the energy project of strategic importance for Lithuania and the Baltic region – have been performed and the entire project should be accomplished by the end of 2021.
Over 100 kilometres of steel pipes have been welded and 65 kilometres of the pipeline has been laid into trenches in the GIPL project. The most complicated project part – laying the gas pipeline under the largest Lithuanian rivers – has been mainly implemented and allows continuing the planned works.
“The international GIPL gas pipeline will not be just a pipeline between Lithuania and Poland, but rather it will become the main artery connecting the gas markets of the entire EU, the Baltic countries and Finland,” said Minister of Energy Žygimantas Vaičiūnas during a visit to the construction site. “Thus the process of developing the single European gas market will be accomplished in our region and Lithuania as well as other Baltic countries will have complete freedom of choice with regard to gas supply. The most important thing today is keeping to the pre-defined schedule with the rapidly ongoing construction works and finishing the project by the end of 2021, as planned.”
The GIPL project with the value of almost 500 million euros is implemented by the Lithuanian and Polish gas transmission system operators Amber Grid and Gaz-System.
“Lately we have been transmitting big flows of gas via the Lithuanian network to Latvia, Estonia and Finland,” added Nemunas Biknius, CEO of Amber Grid. “According to the data of August, gas flows directed to Latvia exceeded the quantity of gas transported to Kaliningrad and Lithuania. It means that trade in gas is intensive, the market takes advantage of favourable global gas prices and is concerned with having alternative corridors for the development of gas business.”
The gas pipeline between Lithuania and Poland is targeted at elimination of Baltic energy isolation from the EU and at securing competition on the gas market. The GIPL gas pipeline which will be launched at the end of 2021 will enable import of gas from different sources, open up opportunities for gas supply from Poland, to Poland, Ukraine and other states. Furthermore, the new international gas pipeline will enable more efficient use of the Lithuanian gas transmission system and Klaipėda LNG Terminal.