The federal government has secured the construction of the connecting pipeline for the emerging Rügen terminal for liquefied natural gas (LNG) with almost 1.4 billion euros. The company Gascade needed the 1.38 billion euros as a guarantee to get the financing off the ground. This emerges from a response by the Federal Ministry of Economics to a request from the AfD member of the Bundestag Leif-Erik Holm, which is available to the dpa.
It states that it is unlikely that the guarantee will become due, as the Federal Network Agency has already offered the gas network operator Gascade the prospect of being able to recoup the construction and ancillary costs through the network charges. This shift to network charges is common. Holm saw the commitment as a reason why the federal government is sticking to the terminal. "The federal government is too deeply involved financially, the risk of a billion-dollar investment ruin is great." The terminal is not needed for security of supply.
Pipeline construction nearing completion
The ministry's response states that the terminal in Mukran "will essentially be built and financed by the project promoters Deutsche Regas and Gascade". Gascade is building the approximately 50-kilometre-long connecting pipeline from the mainland, while Deutsche Regas is to operate the special vessels for landing, converting and feeding the gas, and is also to carry out certain construction work in the port.
According to its own statements, the federal government is providing the state with around 36 million euros for the expansion of the port of Mukran. In addition, the 2023 federal budget and the draft for 2024 have allocated a total of around 117 million euros for charter costs for the ship "Transgas Power". Since September 2023, the Confederation has been able to have these costs reimbursed by Deutsche Regas. The company had rented the ship. It is to be used as a floating terminal in Mukran from the beginning of next year, was recently rechartered and was underway as an LNG tanker.
According to a budget ruling by the Federal Constitutional Court, the coalition must plug billion-dollar holes in the 2024 federal budget, negotiations on this are still ongoing. The budget is no longer to be passed by the Bundestag this year.
The construction of the connection pipeline is on the home stretch. The approval process for the stationing of initially one and later two planned terminal ships and their operation is still ongoing. Critics see the environment and tourism threatened by the terminal. The federal government considers it necessary, citing the security of energy supply.