“Unlike a number of other companies, Gazprom takes a careful look at the prospects for natural gas with due account for the considerable potential of further rises in demand and will continue to invest in the gas business,” Kiril Polous told the forum Gas Russia 2021.
“Many companies recorded record profits in 2021. But at the same time, several major oil and gas companies, the sector’s leaders, reduced their investments. To a great extent, this can be explained by the incorrect signals that market regulators are sending and politicians pursuing a cause by insisting on trends towards low-carbon development and the energy transition.”
Polous referred to leading international consultants who are forecasting a considerable rise in gas consumption in the long term. According to current assessments, by 2040, demand for gas could exceed 5 trillion cu.m.
“Gazprom understands all too well the specific nature of the gas sector, the intensive capital required and the long lead-in time for completing projects. It sees such an approach as shortsighted and is continuing to develop key infrastructure projects,” Polous told the gathering.
“We believe that stable investment in the gas sector will allow us to avoid any repeat of the crisis of 2021 and to rule out having the ‘energy transition’ turn into an ‘energy collapse.’”
Polous said the current global gas shortage and the sharp rise in prices “were the predictable result of decisions taken in recent years intended to reduce the importance of traditional energy sources for sustainable functioning of energy”.
He recalled that the rapid recovery of gas markets had been unexpected.
“Many experts suggested that the trend of 2020 would remain in place – and not just for a year – and demand would take some time to recover to pre-pandemic levels,” Polous said. “But this year proved the skeptics wrong. It is expected that by the end of 2021, world-wide gas consumption will increase by 150 billion cu.m. (bcm) – to 4.2 trillion cu.m. – surpassing the ‘pre-pandemic’ level of 2019. And the better part of the rise in demand throughout the world will focus on Gazprom’s key sales markets – Russia, Europe and China – where consumption will rise by 130 bcm.”