Poland’s state-owned natural gas company said its liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports totaled 3.76 billion cubic meters (Bcm) in 2020, or 10% more than in 2019. 

The country has been working in recent years to cut its reliance on Russian natural gas supplies by expanding its relationships with additional pipeline suppliers and LNG exporters, particularly those in Norway, Qatar and the United States. 

Polskie Górnictwo Naftowe i Gazownictwo SA (PGNiG) said it took in 35 LNG cargoes last year, or four more than it did in 2019. The company also continued to diversify its supply with LNG originating from Trinidad and Tobago, and Nigeria last year. LNG imports now account for more than 25% of all natural gas imported by PGNiG.

“This year we have already received two loads of liquefied gas and in February we expect another one,” said President Paweł Majewski. “The following months will bring an increase in the frequency of deliveries. In the second and third quarters, we plan to receive a total of about 15 cargoes.”

Overall, PGNiG said it imported 14.79 Bcm of natural gas in 2020, roughly flat compared with 2019. About 60% of all the imports came from Russia, but the figure is down from 90% in 2015. The company has a pipeline supply agreement with Russia’s state-owned Gazprom that expires at the end of 2022, which it does not intend to renew. 

In recent years, the company has signed a major agreement with Qatar Petroleum to increase LNG imports. PGNiG also has inked deals with Cheniere Energy Inc., Sempra Energy and Venture Global LNG to take volumes from proposed and existing export terminals along the Gulf Coast.

The United States government in particular has worked to buttress supplies of domestic LNG in Central and Eastern Europe in an effort to cut reliance on Russian gas in the region. PGNiG will have secured 9.3 Bcm/year of gas from U.S. projects once deliveries start under all of its long-term contracts with Gulf Coast suppliers. The total Gulf Coast supplies would surpass the 9 Bcm currently imported from Russia. 

Also beyond 2022 when the Gazprom contract expires, the company said it expects an uptick in Norwegian imports via the Baltic Pipeline and even more LNG imports with the expansion of  the Świnoujście LNG terminal.