UK, US to Sign A Major Liquefied Natural Gas Deal
The UK government is expected, within days, to announce a major LNG supply agreement with the United States as the former aims at boosting its gas supply to avoid blackouts this winter.
Citing UK government sources, The Telegraph said in a report that Prime Minister Rishi Sunak would announce the agreement with the U.S. after the COP27 climate summit in Egypt, which ends on November 18.
The UK and the U.S. are currently in the final stages of discussions about an “energy security partnership,” says The Telegraph, which has spoken with current and former UK government officials with knowledge of the talks over a bilateral energy deal.
Despite her shortest stint in office in UK history of just over a month, former UK Prime Minister Liz Truss had the time to discuss details of a UK-U.S. energy security deal personally with U.S. President Joe Biden, The Telegraph reported.
Talks have continued under the current UK prime minister Sunak, and an announcement is expected to be made in the next week or two, according to The Telegraph’s sources.
It is unclear yet whether a public announcement of the deal would include a specific amount of U.S. LNG being shipped to Britain over the next year, or how much of the volumes would be for the UK energy system.
The UK National Grid has warned that the country could see rolling blackouts between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. on cold days this winter if the European gas system is in shortage too and cannot send enough volumes to the UK.
The U.S. has already pledged and has boosted LNG supply to the European Union. In March, just after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the EU and the U.S. agreed to boost American LNG exports to the EU by 15 bcm in 2022 compared to 2021. This year alone, between January through October, around 48 bcm of LNG was exported from the U.S. to the EU, which is 26 bcm more than for the full year of 2021, participants in the latest meeting of the EU-US Task Force on Energy Security said on Monday.
“Building on this trend, the participants committed to work on keeping a high level of LNG supplies to Europe in 2023 of an additional approximately 50 bcm as compared to 2021,” the task force said.