Austria can do without shale gas, but at a price – OMV CEO

28 September 2012 17:49  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Austria can afford to do without shale gas production, but at a price, the CEO of the country’s energy and petrochemicals major OMV said on Friday.

In an interview with Austrian daily Kurier, Gerhard Roiss said that by not pursuing shale gas, the country will lose income and investment opportunities.

Affordable energy is an important competitive factor for energy-intensive chemicals and other industries, Roiss said.

If Europe as a whole does not pursue shale gas, it would fall further behind the US which has been producing shale gas for a number of years, he said. His remarks came as petrochemicals major INEOS said this week that it plans to ship US shale-derived ethane to feed its crackers in Europe.

As for OMV, Roiss said that the company has no plans for shale gas in Austria. “There’s not a single item on shale gas in Austria in our next five-year plan,” he added.

Roiss rejected suggestions that the move may be linked to upcoming elections in Austria. OMV is partly owned by the Austrian government.

As in France and other European countries, shale gas – and in particular hydraulic fracturing (fracking), the process used in exploring and producing the gas - met with opposition from environmentalists in Austria as well.

Kurier published Roiss’ remarks on its website.


By: Stefan Baumgarten
+1 713 525 2653



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