Brief project description
The project aims to establish a new supply route for natural gas from the Middle East and Caspian Region transported by Trans Adriatic Pipeline, north-eastwards of the Western Balkan area towards Kosovo*, Serbia and North Macedonia. The ALKOGAP project however shall be planned as bi-directional pipeline, so the possible supply direction could also be north – south, from the Energy Community Gas Ring (ECGR), or other sources. The benefits will include: - introducing an environmentally more acceptable energy source in the region (replacement for firewood, coal, fuel oil and complementary generation to renewable energy, and the potential for increased cogeneration and CHP);
- facilitating the gasification of considerable eastern parts of Albania and Kosovo*;
- providing diversified gas supply to the region;
- providing the access to Albanian storage capacities;
- providing significant transit capacity and income to Albania and Kosovo;
- creating the preconditions for supporting the regional concept of South European Gas Ring;
- Reducing CO2 emissions in the region and facilitating economic development.
The Albania-Kosovo* Gas Pipeline (ALKOGAP) project is to interconnect the existing and planned gas transmission system of the Republic of Albania (including TAP project) with the future projected gas transmission system of the Republic of Kosovo, and the transmission interconnectors which are part of eastern brunch of Energy Community Gas Ring (ECGR), as well. The project aims to establish a new supply route for natural gas from the Middle East and Caspian Region transported by Trans Adriatic Pipeline, north-eastwards of the Western Balkan area towards Serbia. The ALKOGAP project however shall be planned as bi-directional pipeline, so the possible supply direction could also be north – south, from the ECGR, or other sources. The construction of this transmission pipeline would enable the gasification of Albania and Kosovo* and provide a diversified and reliable natural gas supply. This transmission supply project, of about 260 km total length would create the preconditions for the further development of the natural gas markets of Albania, and the creation and development of the natural gas markets of Kosovo* in the estimated annual level of 1.5 - 2 bcm (1-1.3 bcm for Albania and 0.5 - 0.7 bcm for Kosovo*). It would be possible to increase its capacity (double or triple), in the case that ALKOGAP would be used to supply Serbia and other countries with Caspian or Middle East gas. This transmission connection, besides benefits to the European market, would also provide a significant economic development incentive to the transited countries. Being part of ECGR, this regional project is of Energy Community significance and complies with the EU established criteria for Trans-European Networks for Energy. This project is in line with the aims of the Energy Community Treaty –establishing the regional gas market, integrated with EU energy market. The Albania-Kosovo* gas pipeline is considered part of the Energy Community Gas Ring, which is the concept of gasification for the entire region, proposed by the WB Study and accepted by the Gas Fora of the Energy Community. The proposed project is in line with Albanian Government priorities in the gasification of the country and in the gasification of the EU countries and Contracting Parties of the Energy Community.
The project is fully in line with the EU’s pre-accession strategy (to develop the regional energy market and strengthen energy security) and the national IPA programme for Albania. Albania still remains unconnected to the regional and European gas network and there is no natural gas industry and gas market in the country. The diversification of sources and routes of the energy supply, to increase the security of energy, is a strategic objective of Albania. Albania’s national energy strategy (2003, reviewed in 2008) indicates that the top priority for Albania is the securing of new supplies for oil and natural gas through by participating in the regional and international gas network projects. Within the framework of the regional initiatives and the Energy Community goals, Albania fully supports the development of a Western Balkan Gas Ring, part of which is considered the IAP and TAP gas pipeline projects. In this context linking Albania to regional and international gas network will have a very positive impact for the country gasification and energy supply situation. For this gas pipeline, it may be possible to utilize the potential storage of natural gas in Albania (Dumre area and the depleted gas field in Divjaka).
During the period 2014-2015, MEI (now MIE) with the assistance of the Energy Community Secretariat prepared the amendment of the gas law, referred to the Third Energy Package of the EU. On 23 September 2015 the Albanian Parliament has approved the law no. 102/2015, date 23.09.2015, “On natural gas sector”, which is published on the Official Gazette no. 178, date 15 October 2015. In this legislation (gas law and its secondary legislation, which will be prepared), are included gas sector activities transmission, distribution, supply, storage, GNL, market regulation (primary and secondary market), competition and inspection.
Currently there is no functional infrastructure and natural gas market. However, in order to initiate the perspective of the natural gas sector development and fulfillment of obligations that Kosovo* has as a member of the Energy Community Treaty, the Government of the Republic of Kosovo through the Ministry of Economic Development has prepared the Third Package of Primary Energy Legislation, based on the requirements of EU legislation (the relevant Directives and Regulations). The Law no. 05 / L-82 on Natural Gas, adopted by the Assembly of the Republic of Kosovo on 13 July 2016, is also included within the framework of the Third Energy Package. The Law on Natural Gas defines the principles for the organization and functioning of the natural gas sector, market access, criteria and procedures for issuing authorizations for transmitting, distributing, supplying, using, storing natural gas and operating systems.
In addition to the primary legislation there is also a secondary legislation, the Administrative Instruction (MED) Nr. 08.2017 on the security of natural gas supply, approved on 23.10.2017 by the Minister of Economic Development. This Administrative Instruction aims to establish measures for the security of natural gas supply as well as rules for safeguarding of the adequate level of security of supply, ensuring the proper and continuous functioning of the internal market of natural gas. Diversification of energy resources and increased security of energy supply is a strategic goal of Kosovo*. Referring to the Energy Strategy of the Republic of Kosovo 2017-2026, a document that guides the energy sector policies, within the framework of its objectives, has also addressed the objective of developing natural gas infrastructure. In implementation of the Energy Strategy of the Republic of Kosovo 2017-2026, according to Decision no. 01/57 on 17.07.2018 the Government of Kosovo has approved the document of Energy Strategy Implementation Program (ESIP) 2018-2020. The framework of this document (ESIP 2018-2020) has identified detailed activities for implementing the measures previously described in the Energy Strategy of the Republic of Kosovo 2017-2026, including activities related to the natural gas component. In order to open the prospect of natural gas development in Kosovo, MED under the projects of interest of the energy sector, has proposed to the National Council for Investment, the project for Natural Gas, which is listed as a priority in the framework of the projects of national interest initiated for energy, approved by the National Council for Investment, as stated in the sections above. Increasing the diversity of primary energy sources is considered a very important component for sustainable and qualitative energy supply. In this regard, developing the natural gas sector in Kosovo through inter-connections with other gas infrastructure projects in the region, especially the Energy Community Gas Ring, respectively the connection to the TAP / IAP pipeline system is evaluated as a real opportunity for future supply with natural gas.