Following completion of Croatia’s construction of a Liquefied Natural Gas terminal in January 2021, Hungary will be able to purchase LNG from Qatar, Péter Szijjártó, the minister for foreign affairs and trade, said on Tuesday.
Szijjártó told MTI that the Qatar deal would radically change the security of central Europe’s gas supply.
Most countries in the region currently get gas from a single source, he said, adding that Qatar had become the top global exporter of LNG, with more than 100 billion cubic meters of gas exported each year.
Plans are to boost this to 145 billion cubic metres over the next few years.
He said Qatar has expressed openness to entering into talks on delivering LNG to Hungary via Croatia. (Croatia LNG terminal in Hungary’s interest)
Gas from Qatar may well be part of Hungary’s energy mix from January 2021, he said.
“The more we can obtain gas from a diverse range of sources, the greater our energy security and the cheaper the gas is,” Szijjártó said.
The LNG terminal in Croatia will have an annual capacity of 2.7 billion cubic metres of gas, while that of the interconnector at the Croatia-Hungaria border will be 1.6 billion cubic metres, Szijjártó said, adding that this was a significant amount in light of Hungary’s annual consumption of 9.5 billion cubic metres.
Concerning other areas of cooperation with Qatar, Szijjártó mentioned Hungarian audiovisual technologies applied in Qatar’s sports stadiums and Hungarian cheese exports amounting to an annual 140-150 tonnes. Further opportunities are related to drinking water, he added.
Szijjártó said the sides had come to consensus concerning the wording of a bilateral investment protection agreement, which, following its signing in the near future, will make mutual investments and bilateral trade easier. He noted that
Qatar has one of the largest investment funds worldwide and Hungary’s investment environment “has clearly attracted Qatar’s attention”.
During his visit, Szijjártó had talks with Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al Mahmoud, head of Qatar’s investment authority, Saad Sherida al-Kaabi, the minister of energy and industry, Ali bin Ahmed Al Kuwari, the minister of commerce and industry, as well as Soltan bin Saad Al-Muraikhi, minister of state and foreign affairs.