Despite the ongoing war in its neighbourhood, Hungary’s energy supply is stable. Both natural gas and electricity demand are fully covered by domestic systems. Still, competent authorities are prepared for every scenario.
In mid-March, the Moldovan and Ukrainian energy systems were successfully connected to the continental European system to help supply energy to the regions. Ukraine was disconnected from the Russian and Belarusian networks for a long-planned test run on the very day the war broke out (24th February), but the reconnection could not take place.
Ukraine’s original plan was to be connected to the European synchronous system in 2024, until then it would have been tested to see if it can independently maintain the 50 Hz, a prerequisite for European connectivity. However, the war changed the scenario and the two-year preparation period was reduced to two weeks – reported by Magyar Nemzet.
The European system operators and regulators have been working hard to find a solution to the technical and regulatory issues of interconnection and to meet the two countries’ emergency synchronisation requests.
Finally, on 16th March, the trial synchronisation of the European system and the Ukrainian and Moldovan systems could start, which will greatly support the stability of the Ukrainian-Moldovan electricity system and the security of the population’s supply. As the Hungarian news portal Blikk reports, further hard work is needed to maintain the power balance of the electricity system, and the costs of emergency synchronisation will have to be shared between the European Member States.
In Hungary, the gas demand is met by the combination of domestic production and imports. The latter is constantly monitored and the contracted quantities of gas are currently being delivered through six interconnectors.
In addition, there are also 1.25 billion cubic metres of gas in storage.
This level is more than sufficient for the season. Out of this, 900 million is the strategic stock that might remain untouched this year, based on the foreseen scenarios. „Considering the principle of solidarity, we should help our neighbours if their population is in trouble with the natural gas supply, but only if the help does not cause any disadvantage to the Hungarian population.
But so far, no such request has been received from anywhere,”- said Pál Ságvári, Vice President for International Relations of the Hungarian Energy and Public Utility Regulatory Authority (MEKH),
The expert also pointed out that the gas currently being transported outwards on the Ukrainian-Hungarian gas pipelines, is from the West and not from Hungary’s storage facilities.
Although the Ukrainian backbone network has not been damaged so far, Hungary is prepared for every possible scenario. Since October, Hungary has been receiving significant quantities of gas from Austria and Slovakia. In addition, gas from the LNG terminal in Croatia or the Turkish Stream going through the Serbian-Hungarian pipeline could be an additional source.
We should not forget the 900 million cubic metres of strategic stock either which was mentioned previously. Further good news is that the Greek-Bulgarian pipeline will be ready for the next heating season that will bring gas from Turkey and the Caspian Sea region.
The vice president pointed out that
Hungary has made significant infrastructure developments in the field of natural gas in recent years, and has gas pipeline connections with six of its seven neighbours.
Nevertheless, Russian gas is flowing in all of them, so we need to work on its long-term replacement. To this end, initiatives have been launched at EU level on voluntary joint purchasing of gas and mandatory 90 per cent refilling of storage facilities.
Source: blikk.hu, magyarnemzet.hu