Italian Deputy Foreign Minister Manlio Di Stefano announced the need to reduce the country’s dependence on Russian gas at the expense of Algeria, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan. “Like in the rest of Europe, we have the problem of dependence on a narrow circle of sources, mainly from Russia,” Stefano said in an interview with the newspaper la Repubblica.
The Deputy Minister emphasized that the reduction of Russian supplies to Italy via the Ukrainian route at the beginning of the year poses a threat to the country’s energy security. He admitted that such actions of Moscow could be dictated by political considerations.
Stefano urged to think about the medium and long term, as well as consider renewable energy sources. In the short term, in his opinion, Algeria is the most reliable partner. In addition, the Trans-Adriatic Gas Pipeline (TAP) is important for the diversification of supplies, through which Azerbaijani gas is supplied and which has allowed to slightly curb the rise in energy prices for Italians.
The politician confirmed that Italy expects to increase the capacity of TAP to 10 billion cubic meters of gas.
Another promising destination is Turkmenistan, which could connect with the TAP pipeline in the Caspian Sea, he said. However, the Caspian Sea is included in the “Russian zone of influence”, so the construction of such a gas pipeline depends, among other things, on the Russian Federation.