Equinor expects fundamentals behind European gas rally to remain

Equinor's flag in Stavanger, Norway December 5, 2019. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

OSLO, Sept 15 (Reuters) - Norway's Equinor (EQNR.OL) expects the fundamentals driving the current high price of natural gas in Europe to remain in place during the coming autumn and winter seasons, Chief Financial Officer Ulrica Fearn told an energy conference on Wednesday.

The price of natural gas has surged to record levels in Europe, driving up power prices as the winter heating season approaches with below-average levels of gas in storage.

"It's being pushed by weather anomalies, by general inflation in commodity prices and supply chain bottlenecks..., but mainly the prices are driven by basic fundamentals of tight supply and high demand," Fearn said.

"The price signals clearly indicate that Europe needs our gas more than ever."

Equinor, Europe's second largest gas supplier after Russia's Gazprom (GAZP.MM), was ramping up gas production where it could, including at Norway's giant Troll field, in order to meet demand, Fearn said.

"We are approaching the winter season with storage below average levels, so we do see these fundamentals continuing into the autumn and winter," she said.

Writing by Terje Solsvik, editing by Gwladys Fouche

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