European Energy Security and the Politics of LNG Development in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean

Andrea Prontera

The development of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) worldwide is contributing to transform the international gas business, including the European regional market traditionally based on pipelines. However, the implications of this development for the politics of EU energy security are not yet clear, and scholarly attention on the subject has been limited: research on European energy security have traditionally been focused on pipeline politics and the EU-Russia relationships. EU attention for LNG has also been discontinuous. The new Energy Union plan and the 2014 European Energy Security Strategy have indicated LNG as an important pillar to increase the liquidity of the European gas market and diversify EU supplies. But the EU still lacks a clear and common approach on the subject. Only in July 2015 the European Commission has launched a consultation for an 'EU strategy for LNG and gas storage', while many member states had already made various steps to develop LNG capacity according to their own energy security agenda. Against this backdrop, the paper aims to analyse the basic features of the European politics of LNG by focusing on Southern European member states (France, Italy, Spain, Greece and Croatia) and the Mediterranean region. LNG development in these countries will be considered in the context of the evolution of the global LNG business and of the new EU LNG governance and market environment, and paying attention to national and local politics. In particular, in order to address the interactions between these different dimensions, the paper analyses the political dynamics behind LNG development along the entire LNG value chain: from the producer states to the EU markets, including the localisation process of the regasification facilities in the territory of member states.

The abstracts and papers on this website reflect the views and opinions of the author(s). UACES cannot be held responsible for the opinions of others. Conference papers are works-in-progress - they should not be cited without the author's permission.