Following the construction of the Gas Interconnection Poland-Lithuania (GIPL) on both sides of the Polish-Lithuanian border, a symbolic Gold Weld was welded, marking the physical connection of the gas transmission systems of the two European Union countries. Welding the gold weld is one of the key milestones in the installation of the gas pipeline connecting the gas markets of the Baltic region and the European Union.
“The GIPL, which integrates the energy island of the Baltic States and Finland into the single EU gas market, is in the final stage of construction,” said Dainius Kreivys, Minister of Energy of Lituania. “Energy independence is being strengthened by a powerful link with the European continent. For decades, the creation of interconnection between Lithuania and Poland has been the missing link in the overall picture of our energy infrastructure. With more sources of gas supply, we will be able to ensure the security and reliability of gas supply, we will be freer to decide where to get energy resources from and we will be able to react more flexibly to gas market price changes. The GIPL will also open up opportunities to make more use of Klaipėda LNG terminal and in the future, it will be adapted for the transmission of green hydrogen.”
“We are connecting the gas transmission systems of Poland and Lithuania and next year gas will flow this way,” added Minister Piotr Naimski, Government Plenipotentiary for Strategic Energy Infrastructure. “The GIPL will end the gas isolation of the Baltic States and facilitate the free choice of supplier as well as purchase of raw material at competitive market prices. The interconnector is also an important element of the strategy for diversification of gas supplies to Poland. Together with the investments implemented by GAZ-SYSTEM, such as the Baltic Pipe, the expansion of the LNG Terminal in Świnoujście and the interconnector with Slovakia, it will help Poland and other countries in our region to become independent from the dictates of the Russian monopolist.”
The total length of the international gas pipeline interconnection between Lithuania and Poland is 508 kilometres, with 165 kilometres in the territory of Lithuania and 343 kilometres in Poland. Shortly after completion of the GIPL, the interconnection will be launched in mid-2022, with the exact date still to be coordinated between TSOs when the construction of all infrastructure will be close to commissioning. Once the gas interconnection is fully completed, capacity will be created to transport up to 27 terawatt-hours (TWh) of natural gas per year to the Baltic States and up to 21 TWh per year to Poland and the Baltic gas markets will become part of the single EU gas market.