Morocco Faces The First Consequences of Hostile Policy against Algeria
The first consequences of Algeria’s suspension of the Maghreb-Europe gas pipeline appeared on the Kingdom of Morocco, which launched regional and international tenders to supply it with this gas with the approach of winter, while it was receiving it easily from Algeria but it lost this advantage due to its hostile actions towards its eastern neighbour.
In this context, Laila Benali, Morocco’s Minister of Energy Transition and Sustainable Development, said in Parliament, according to Arab media, that “the supply of butane gas to the national market is ensured regularly and import through the various ports of the Kingdom after the abolition of the Maghreb-European gas pipeline”.
“The consumption of butane gas in Morocco reached about 2,600 million tons in 2020, recording an increase of 5% compared to 2019”, she added.
“The daily reserve is continuously monitored by the competent authorities. Morocco has opened consultations with regional and international parties to establish a permanent and efficient system for managing national supplies of natural gas”, she asserted.
These developments come days after statements by the Royal Electricity and Water Office downplaying the suspension of work on the Maghreb-Europe gas pipeline, followed by statements by a Moroccan government spokesperson, in which he claimed that “stopping the flow of gas to Morocco has a limited, if not non-existent, effect”.
According to observers, the two Moroccan electricity production stations that were operating with Algerian gas (between 600 and 800 million cubic meters annually), have equipment destined to operate with natural gas, and therefore reversing the process and converting it to work with diesel requires a lot of time and investments.
Bringing liquefied gas also requires, according to observers, special facilities to receive large tankers at the port level, in addition to special industrial units to return gas from its liquid to gaseous state, which is significant additional costs compared to Algerian gas, which was delivered ready for consumption and at the lowest cost.
Spain prevents the terms of the gas contracts concluded with it from reselling this substance in the south, according to what was reported by the Algerian News Agency two days ago, that is, unlike the movement of gas in the Maghreb-Europe pipeline, and it is a process that requires a lot of time and money (investments).