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The expansion of the Medgaz gas pipeline, ready to enter service this month

The Medgaz gas pipeline, a key energy infrastructure, since it transports Algerian gas to Spain, has already completed its expansion from 8 to 10 bcm (10,000 million cubic meters), an additional capacity that is scheduled to enter service this month.

Medgaz, the company that operates this gas pipeline, is owned by the Algerian Sonatrach, which controls 51%, and Naturgy (MC), which owns the remaining 49% through a special purpose vehicle in which BlackRock also participates. (NYSE:).

The infrastructure has become even more strategic after Algeria, due to political differences with its neighbor Morocco, decided on November 1 to close the Maghreb Europe gas pipeline, in operation since November 1996.

That other gas pipeline linked Algeria with Spain, also passing through Moroccan territory, so, by closing that great pipeline, Medgaz has become the main direct gateway to gas for Spain.

The energy multinational Naturgy and its Algerian ally Sonatrach agreed in July to start up this expansion, in which they have invested some 73 million euros, for the fourth quarter of 2021, a schedule that will hardly take long, since the expansion as such is finished, pressure tests have been done and all that remains is to start it up.

Specifically, the CEO of the Algerian state-owned company Sonatrach, Toufik Hakkar, assured a few days ago that the fourth turbocompressor of this gas pipeline plans to enter service this month.

In an interview with the television channel “Al24News”, Hakkar underlined that Sonatrach has been able to fulfill all its contractual commitments with the Spanish side through the Medgaz pipeline only “without the slightest problem”.

[Source: Today-In-24, Efe, UK, 16Jan20]

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