Russian Gas Supplier Moving Beyond Germany and Czech Republic
As It Reports Greater Use of Compressed Natural Gas in Home Market
Gazprom is expanding its natural gas vehicles work in Western Europe, confirming plans to step up the activities of Italy-based Promgas SpA with local partners. Italy is Europe’s largest NGV market.
Promgas has been looking into the compressed natural gas and liquefied natural gas markets in Italy since 2012, according to an NGV Journal report. “The ultimate goal,” states an article attributed to Promgas, “is to bridge the East-West as well as South-North European transport corridors to provide continuous possibility for all modes of transport to get filled with methane all along their way.”
Rostislav Kazancev is Promgas CEO.
Through its subsidiaries, Gazprom now provides NGV fueling in the Czech Republic and Germany. Gazprom Germania has opened its eighth compressed natural gas fueling station, in the Baltic Sea resort town of Ribnitz-Damgarten, north of Berlin.
The Ribnitz-Damgarten CNG station is the first fruit of a cooperative effort, with Aral, Gazprom Germania says, noting that Aral is the German gasoline outlet of BP, “the biggest fuel station provider in Germany.”
Gazprom Germania plans to have 15 CNG fueling stations in Germany by the end of 2014.
Major NGV Event Sponsorships
Demand for compressed natural gas as a vehicle fuel is meanwhile expanding in Russia too, says Eugene Pronin, who heads up the gas producer’s NGV export activities. Gazprom deputy chairman Valery Markelov has just announced that the company converted 515 of its vehicles to natural gas during the first half of this year, Pronin says, bringing the corporate NGV total to more than 4,000 out of a total fleet of some 30,000 vehicles.
“I think we have the largest corporate NGV fleet in the world,” Pronin told F&F.
Gazprom holds 83% of all Russian CNG filling stations, operates 14 CNG filling stations and one mobile LNG fueling unit in Western Europe, and “is heading towards further expansion of its activities on the international NGV markets beyond current presence in the Czech Republic and Germany,” Pronin says.
To help call attention to natural gas vehicles, Gazprom sponsors colorful international road rallies. The firm backed last month’s NGV Silk Way Rally from Moscow to Astrakhan, in far southern Russia on the Caspian Sea, and is now stepping up promotion of the 2,400-mile Blue Corridor-2013: Hansa-International rally around the Baltic this coming October.
This autumn’s event, co-sponsored by the German gas utility E.On Ruhrgas, starts in St. Petersburg on October 3 and concludes there on October 19 with stops in Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia – including passage on an LNG-fueled ferry.
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Source: NGV Journal and Gazprom and subsidiaries with Fleets & Fuels follow-up