On Sunday 31st October, Algeria refused to renew the contract for a gas pipeline supplying Spain as it passes through Morocco « the Gaz Maghreb Europe (GME) pipeline”.
Since 1996, Algeria has shipped approximately 10 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year to Spain and Portugal via Morocco.
Algeria continues to make controversial and contradictory statements to justify his country’s decision to terminate the contract for the Maghreb Europe gas pipeline. For this Country, the decision to end the contract is a “tangible and realistic expression of Algeria’s conviction about the importance of regional integration and the added value represented by these completed infrastructures for the Maghreb integration.”
This controversial position came amid escalated tensions between Algeria and Morocco. On August 24, Algeria decided to cut diplomatic relations with Morocco.
The Algerian regime also decided to close its airspace with Morocco.
Morocco said that the Algerian decision would have no immediate effects on Morocco’s electricity system and the necessary arrangements have been made to ensure the continuity of the country’s electricity supply, and other options are being explored for sustainable, medium, and long-term alternatives.
Moreover, Algeria decided to disrupt the Maghreb-Europe gas pipeline, on the eve of winter and in the international context of increasing energy prices, with the aim to use gas supply for political purposes.
The Country is attempting to take advantage of rising energy prices, by resorting to a gas blackmail scheme with the aim to serve its political agenda and without any consideration to the EU’s energy security supply.
By venturing in this way, the credibility of Algeria, as an economic partner to Europe, is at stake.