From Rome, Mourad Rouighi – Many Italian political and economic observers, in Milan and Rome, no longer hide their concern since Qatar brushed aside accusations from Brussels relating to allegations of corruption in the European Parliament (the scandal says of ‘Qatargate’) and the ensuing decision to suspend the access of the Qatari authorities to the seat of this institution.
Indeed, a communiqué from Doha severely attacked certain voices who pointed the finger at it, while indicating that “the decision to impose such a discriminatory restriction, which limits dialogue and cooperation with Qatar before the end of the process judiciary, negatively affects regional and global security cooperation, as well as discussions on global energy poverty and security, especially since this scandal the funds in question were transferred by the Ministry of Labor, officially, with the aim of informing the European authorities on the conditions of the workers engaged in the construction of the infrastructures of the 2022 World Cup.
Qatar is a major supplier of liquefied gas (LNG) to Belgium and Italy, and its government has made it clear that the turn of the investigation does not bode well and that some shortcuts aimed at amnesty from other parties and indicting this country, which has acted in complete transparency, runs the risk of impacting the natural gas supply agreements which have been the subject of several back and forths by Belgian, German and Italian leaders to lead to the recent agreements initialed with the emirate.
The daily Il Sole 24 Orethe official organ of Italian employers, aware of the risks run by certain capitals, recalled yesterday that Qatar is, along with the United States, one of the largest LNG exporters in the world and remains essential for the success of the system. European energy detachment from Russia.
And according to the latest Commission data, Qatar currently accounts for less than 5% of total gas imports into the Union. But the energy dimension of Doha is set to grow in the years to come, in parallel with the growth of its liquefaction capacity thanks to the North Field maxi-project: a project launched in two phases (North Field East and North Field South) and which should be completed in 2026 and 2027.
And to emphasize that the Italian ENI is also interested in this project since the Chien à six pattes is in a consortium with the French Total for the exploitation of this immense offshore deposit.
The fact remains that beyond ENI’s presence in the North Field project, Qatar remains an important energy player for Italy because it holds, via QatarEnergy, 22% of Adriatic LNG, the company that manages the regasification of Porto Viro (Rovigo), in the north of the peninsula.
It should be noted, finally, by way of summary, that in the first half of 2022 Italy was supplied with gas mainly by Algeria (with a share of around 30%), by Russia (26%) – which preserves its market share, strong in contracts spread over several years – and by Norway and the Netherlands (10%). Qatar’s contribution under the LNG chapter is worth a total of 17% and also includes the United States.
Why Italy and Powerful Europe Fear the Tiny Emirate of Qatar – Algérie Patriotique