GECF Secretary General Meets with Italian Ambassador to Doha
The Secretary General of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) Dr. Yury Sentyurin met with the Italian Ambassador to Doha, His Excellency Pasquale Salzano earlier this week.
The Ambassador and the Secretary General debriefed on the recent visit to the GECF of Mr. Claudio D’Amico, Senior Advisor on International Strategic Affairs to the Deputy Prime Minister of Italy; on which occasion Ambassador Salzano accompanied the delegation.
Since there is great overlap in interests between both entities, the working meeting covered a range of other topics, including the ever-increasing role of Italy as a consumer of natural gas in the European market. Italy has special interest to the GECF, considering Italy’s flagship industrial entity ENI has operations in several of the Forum’s member countries, including Qatar, Egypt, and Oman. They also touched upon the main energy issues under the umbrella of the G20, of which Italy will hold the presidency in 2021.
Another point of discussion was Italy’s imminent role as a destination for the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), the European leg of the Southern Gas Corridor, which connects natural gas supplies from GECF Member Azerbaijan to Europe, and in which Italy will be a crucial link(*).
The country is also a front-runner for natural gas-powered vehicles, which hold a 5,3% market share of all new cars sold in Italy, as reported by the ANFIA, the Italian Automotive Industry Association. According to data from ENI, Italy’s flagship oil and gas entity, there are as much as 880,000 vehicles powered by natural gas on the Italian roads, accounting for almost 80% of the entire European gas-powered fleet.
As a result of the meeting, both parties agreed to maintain a regular dialogue, with a particular focus on facilitating the producer/consumer dialogue, which is one of the Forum’s core objectives.