The importance of FSRU, the Floating Storage Regasification Unit and vaporizing LNG in Alexandroupolis against the “Russian energy blackmail” after the developments in Ukraine, underlined US Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey Pyatt in an interview with Athens-Macedonian News Agency on Sunday on the sidelines of the 7th Delphi Economic Forum.
“As Europe is now moving rapidly to reduce its vulnerability to Russian energy blackmail and get away from Russian gas the Alexandroupoli FSRU becomes more and more important. Everybody is trying to build FSRU’s now. The Germans within days of February 24 announced their first two FSRU’s, Kopeluzos has announced a second Alexandroupolis FSRU. We have been hearing from other groups working in Volos, in Thessaloniki, in Korinthos. We will have to see how much and what the market can support” Pyatt said.
The US envoy expressed his satisfaction for works as FSRU in Alexandroupolis in terms of the current condition in the energy sector due to the war in Ukraine and Russia’s position noting that “Greece was ahead of the curve in recognizing the imperative of both diversifying away from Russian gas -that’s what IGB and TAP, Revythoussa and Alexandroupoli are all about- and also the energy transition”.
Greece has so much potential in wind and solar, Pyatt said adding that ” Prime Minister has made clear that this is a priority and the United States has made clear that we want to work with Europe to do both things at the same time: to get off of Russian gas as fast as possible, including with additional American LNG but also to accelerate the energy transition. Cause that is the real answer”.
A lot of the work that you have witnessed from 2017 in Alexandroupoli, we look like we were fortunetellers and we could see the future in terms of how the US and our allies are trying to respond to the invasion in Ukraine and the geopolitical earthquake that this has produced. Regardless of how the war ends, one thing is clear that Russia will have even more aggressive presence at the south coast of Ukraine -that’s where the war is concentrated today with the failure of Russian invasion against Kiev. So that the work that we do in Alexandroupoli with military logistics is critically important. You have seen all these huge ships that we have brought in and we keep going.
The fantastic partnership between Greece and USA have been enjoying in building up Alexandroupoli as a key hub for military logistics, for energy and also for connectivity with the rest of the Western Balkans, Bulgaria and the Black Sea was on the epicenter of the Under Secretary of State Victoria Nuland recent meetings in Greece, the US Ambassador said ” A lot of the work that you have witnessed from 2017 on Alexandroupoli we look like we were fortunetellers and we could see the future in terms of how the US and our allies are trying to respond to the invasion in Ukraine and the geopolitical earthquake that this has produced. Regardless of how the war ends, one thing is clear that Russia will have even more aggressive presence at the south coast of Ukraine -that’s where the war is concentrated today with the failure of Russian invasion against Kiev. So that the work that we do in Alexandroupoli with military logistics is critically important. You have seen all these huge ships that we have brought in and we keep going”.
He said that a new period opens in United States and EU partnership. «It’s no secret that there was some damage done during the previous administration for stylistic reasons if nothing else. But everything that we have done in our response to Russian’s invasion to the Ukraine has prioritized this coordination and partnership with Europe. It was incredibly powerful to see Foreign Minister Dendias in Odessa, standing there in the hottest part of the world showing the flag for Greece but also for the European Union. We have coordinated on sanctions, we have coordinated on our military response, we have coordinated on our message to Vladimir Putin. Some of these have been unsuccessful on the messaging side but none can say today that we haven’t tried our hardest in preserving the diplomatic option. I think that this will endure. This will set the tone for the years ahead”.
On the war in Ukraine, Pyatt said that “for the Ukrainians if there was earlier a debate about where the strategic future lays, that debate is over. Everybody in the country is unified on the view that they want to be part of the European Union. They want to be part of NATO or at least the European Security Community and they want to have nothing to do with a Russian, Eurasian world that Vladimir Putin is trying to propagate. It seems to me a fantastic opportunity to have this huge country with all its resources, all its relatively young people, all of its agricultural potential, all of that is a huge positive for Europe and the European project. Greece of course agrees on the importance of welcoming Ukraine into the European family. The United States supports that view as well and Europe has to make some decisions. We applaud Prime Minister Mitsotakis’s views on that”.
US Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt who will leave in less than a month from Greece, as the longest-serving US Ambassador in history referred once again to the beauties of Greece and expressed his satisfaction over – the team he leaves behind and the significant progress in the US-Greek relations all these years. “Greece is such a lovely country. There are a few places in the world that can combine beauties like that. You always want to leave things a little better when you took over and I think I have checked the box on that. I am leaving a very strong team behind”, he concluded.