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Talks on Qatari LNG supply to planned German terminal in deep, concrete stage: Weil

Tuesday, 03 December 2019 | 16:00

Negotiations between Qatar Petroleum (QP) and German company Uniper to supply Qatari LNG directly to Germany’s planned LNG terminal are in very deep and concrete stages, Prime Minister of the Federal State of Lower Saxony H E Stephan Weil said in Doha yesterday.

Weil is heading a delegation of about 40 German companies based in Lower Saxony, which is Germany’s second largest economy with a population of eight million people and a GDP of around $330bn.

Addressing a Qatar-Germany Business Forum organised by the Qatar Chamber (QC) in collaboration with German Industry and Commerce Office Qatar (AHK), Weil said that with the support of the Lower Saxony state government, planning is underway for the construction of Germany’s first LNG terminal, and Qatari LNG supply to the terminal can help the country achieve its carbon dioxide emissions reduction targets.

German Ambassador to Qatar Hans-Udo Muzel added that feasibility studies on the project are currently being conducted, and discussions on commercial and financial sides are underway.

The planned Wilhelmshaven floating LNG import terminal is proposed to be developed at the Jade Weser Port, which is the only deep-water port in Germany capable of handling large LNG tankers.

“We are going out of nuclear power and we’re going out from coal. But we also have to go in renewable energies. And in relation to that, I see a lot of interesting perspective especially for liquid gas. So far, negotiations (between QP and Uniper) are in very deep and concrete stage,” Weil said while talking to mediapersons on the sidelines of the event.

Speaking on the Qatar-German partnership on the field of electrification, Weil said that Lower Saxony and Qatar, as prominent shareholders of Volkswagen, the world’s largest automobile manufacturer, are currently involved in a huge project on battery cell production.

With global demand for electric vehicles (EV) on the rise, demand for EV-battery production is also increasing. Volkswagen recently announced its €1bn investment on a battery cell factory in Germany.

Weil added: “In Europe, as well as in China, there is now a very challenging phase in technology because we’re going into electrification. There are many changes especially in the value chain. The engine is no longer the most important car component, but the battery. There are now many investors around the world looking at Germany. German car manufacturers are looking for partners on battery cell production. We’ll see if we are successful to build this new industry in Germany, and I will also be happy with the help from Qatar”.

Hannover, capital city of Lower Saxony which is home to the world’s largest industrial trade fair ‘Hannover Messe’ and occupies the leading position in Germany’s air traffic to the East, is also expected to have direct flights to Doha through Qatar Airways in the future, Weil added.

Qatar, which is Germany’s largest Arab investor and third largest partner in the Gulf, has previously announced it will increase its investments to Germany from €25bn to €35bn. New business areas will also be increasingly developed through partnerships with SMEs, added Weil.

According to QC Board Member Dr Khalid Al Hajri, total trade volume between Qatar and Germany reached €1.9bn last year. There are 300 German companies currently operating in Qatar, and around 1,800 German residents are living and working in the country.

During the event, presentations were made on various opportunities available in the Qatari and Lower Saxony’s markets, including presentations from the Qatar Free Zones Authority, Investment Promotion Agency, Foreign Trade, Investment Promotion at the Lower Saxony Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour, Transportation and Digitalisation, which were followed by B2B meetings among the participants.
Source: The Peninsula

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