The energy crisis triggered by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine has gradually subsided, but the global energy market has undergone drastic changes. As the relationship between Russia and Europe continues to deteriorate, Russia is eager to develop new consumer markets.
The problem is that Russia needs to develop its own technology to increase exports of liquefied natural gas. The country has previously supplied gas to Europe mainly through pipelines.
After the Russia-Ukraine conflict broke out in February last year, Russia-Europe relations deteriorated sharply, and Russia sharply cut natural gas supplies to Europe. The European Union decided to stop using Russia's fossil fuels by 2027, and last year began to import LNG from countries such as the United States and Qatar.
Russia, for its part, is looking to increasing exports of LNG after natural gas exports to Europe plummeted.
However, Russia's decades-long focus on a sprawling network of pipelines from Germany to Turkey has left it far behind the rest of the world in LNG technology.
In 2021 before the conflict broke out, LNG accounted for about 15% of Russia's total natural gas exports. The country hopes to triple LNG exports by 2030. If this goal is achieved, Russia will become a major LNG exporter.
Russia is the world's largest exporter of natural gas, but its LNG exports lag behind Australia, Qatar and the United States.
Russia is accelerating its own liquefaction technology to compete head-to-head with the best LNG equipment makers, from France to the United States, which have all left the country after the conflict with Ukraine erupted.
In April this year, Russia's private LNG exporter Novatek obtained a patent for the Arctic Cascade Modified (ACM) process, and the Yamal LNG project led by the company is the largest LNG plant in Russia so far.
Morena Skalamera, a lecturer in Russian and international studies at Leiden University in the Netherlands, said: "Indigenous Arctic LNG technology has become an absolute priority for Putin's government, it is far from being a viable alternative to Western technology, but (Russia) has an incentive to continue improving in a wartime economy."
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