The diversification of Europe's gas supply, the future of liquid natural gas, the value of the continent's local markets and internal resources were on the agenda at the European Autumn Gas Conference, which was held in London over 28-30 October. The event offered an overview of the evolution of a global gas market that is increasingly influenced by the needs of Asia and other developing regions and in which Europe has a well-established presence.
The Executive Leadership Panel saw discussion of energy business' short- and medium- term investment strategies and the long-term challenges they will have to face. Among the speakers was Enel's Head of Global Upstream Gas Marco Arcelli, who pointed out that the Group is working towards finding new resources and differentiating supplies, principally through direct investment in local upstream gas markets.
"Enel can play an important role in ensuring secure, competitive and sustainable energy supply," said Arcelli. "We invest in renewable energy, energy efficiency and networks that strengthen overall system security, as well as working to keep existing infrastructure as a potential back-up."
"Everyone's talking about the shale gas revolution in the United States and how it has increased the country's competiveness. Italy has a huge untapped potential that could cover 20 percent of consumption over 20 years at a cost that is 30 percent lower than imports, reducing its annual trade deficit by €6 billion and increasing tax revenue by €2 billion per year."
North Africa and its role in southern Europe's energy sector was also on Arcelli's agenda, observing that the Group is one of the most active businesses in Algeria and can already count on an investment of $200 million, with a further $500 million to come in the next five years. In September Enel was awarded two gas exploration blocks in Algeria alongside the multinational Dragon Oil: in Msari Akabli, located in the Ahnet basin in the south west of the country, where prominent gas and oil discoveries have already been found; and in North Tinrhert in the east of the nation, where a number of oil facilities are located and where Enel is already working on the Ain Tsila and South East Illizi concessions.