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UAE TAQA gets European companies for Dutch gas storage

Abu Dhabi National Energy Co (TAQA) has secured three European energy companies as launch customers for its huge Bergermeer gas storage facility in The Netherlands in deals worth up to US$1bn.

Statoil ASA, Vattenfall Energy Trading Netherlands and an undisclosed third European energy company agreed to lease a total of more than 90% of the 1bnm3 of annual storage capacity, said TAQA in a statement.

“The vast market demand for our storage capacity is proof of northwest Europe‚Äôs need for the seasonal flexibility offered by this project. Bergermeer is coming to market at the right time and will be a game changer,” Carl Sheldon, TAQA CEO.

Environmental concerns delayed the project as the highest administrative court in The Netherlands decided to stop construction while it waited for the results of additional tests. The court is expected to decide on future construction work in early 2012. This will delay the construction completion of the project past the original 2014 deadline.

Together with the new LNG terminal in Rotterdam, the 4.1bnm3 gas storage project forms a key part of the country’s plan to become the European natural gas hub. Bergermeer is owned partly by Abu Dhabi government-owned TAQA, which holds a 60% stake and Dutch government-owned EBN BV, which holds the remainder. TAQA will act as operator and as marketing agents for all storage capacity.

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