Wednesday, February 19, South Korea - President Dalia Grybauskaitė attended the naming ceremony of the vessel for the Klaipėda liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in South Korean city Ulsan. The LNG storage vessel was built for Lithuania in South Korea by Norwegian company Höegh LNG in association with the local company Hyundai Heavy Industries.
Following ship naming traditions, the President gave the LNG vessel a female name "Independence" and broke against the vessel's side a bottle of sparkling wine specially prepared for this occasion. Released into water, "Independence" will reach Lithuania before the end of the year. Grybauskaitė underlined that Lithuania - the first of the Baltic States having built an LNG terminal - secured its real independence from gas supplier Gazprom that is dictating monopolistic prices today.
The President noted that the vessel symbolizes a sort of geopolitical triangle comprising our Nordic partner Norway, Lithuania and South Korea.
"It is a historic day for Lithuania. This vessel carrying a nice symbolic name "Independence" is a real step towards our energy independence and security, which means that we have an alternative and no one ever will blackmail us over gas prices or influence, through energy, our political or economic life. It means not only fair prices for our people, but also an economically stronger and more competitive Lithuania," the President said.
Grybauskaitė noted that after launching the Klaipėda terminal we will be able to import gas from all over the world at competitive market prices. The terminal will enable Lithuania to negotiate cheaper gas with all suppliers providing gas not only via terminals, but also via pipelines, she said. At present, absent alternative gas supplies, Lithuania pays for natural gas a political price imposed by Gazprom - approximately 30 percent more than other EU member states.
According to the President, a big and sophisticated LNG vessel embodying the most advanced global technologies demonstrates our country's economic potential. "We will have the most sophisticated vessel that will serve not only Lithuania, but also the entire Baltic region. Lithuania is becoming a stable energy nation," she said.
The LNG terminal is very important for the energy security of not only Lithuania, but also of the whole Baltic region, the President stressed. The capacities of the Klaipėda terminal will be sufficient to satisfy the needs of Lithuania and of all the Baltic States - natural gas imported via the terminal would be accessible to Latvia and Estonia as well. It is a guarantee of our energy independence.
Today, vessel "Independence" will raise the anchor and sail off to the sea.
Copyright - R. Dačkus
Last updated 2014.02.19 08:02Back