German gas storage operators optimistic for next winter

Opening of the LNG terminal in Wilhelmshaven
The 'Hoegh Esperanza' Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) is anchored during the opening of the LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) terminal in Wilhelmshaven, Germany, December 17, 2022. Michael Sohn/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

BERLIN, Jan 10 (Reuters) - German gas storage operators expressed optimism on Tuesday that there will not be supply problems next winter due to declining consumption and said there is no chance of shortage this winter.

Even if Russian pipeline deliveries cease completely and liquefied natural gas imports (LNG) were to decrease, it would be possible to refill facilities for the 2023-24 cold season, said the INES German gas storage system operators association.

For this winter, no shortage is expected, it added. "Even with extremely low temperatures and the occurrence of risk factors, there will be no gas shortage in Germany," said INES.

At present, storage facilities are still more than 90% full. By the beginning of February, they are legally required to be 40% full, though thanks to mild weather, many facilities are even able to increase their fill levels on many of the days.

Germany's network regulator chief said last week that considerably less gas was used in the 52nd calendar week of 2022 than in previous years, with consumption down 30% from the average over the past four years.

Reporting by Markus Wacket Writing by Miranda Murray Editing by Madeline Chambers

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