Even in a difficult pandemic year, NAFTA continues to expand internationally
The COVID-19 pandemic had an impact on all businesses during 2020, and the energy sector was not spared as it faced many challenges, too. Measures to combat the pandemic and associated restrictions were felt in all areas of the economy and it was reflected especially in the decline in demand for oil and natural gas. One of the economic challenges all energy companies experienced was the historic lows the price of natural gas reached due to a mild winter.
It was during this exceptional situation that NAFTA’s capability to provide safe and stable operation of its gas facilities proved crucial. “We managed the situation during the pandemic well because of the rapid adaption of all safety and health measures and the commitment shown by our staff,” pointed out Martin Bartošovič, NAFTA’s Chief Executive Officer, while mentioning that the company had been able to provide its customers with stable and reliable services despite the complicated circumstances.
NAFTA continues expanding internationally
Having successfully established itself in Germany and its market, NAFTA turned to ensuring that its underground storage facilities in Bavaria were operating reliably. They were already filled to their working capacity by the end of the year, confirming NAFTA’s service reliability and readiness for the winter season.
Even in 2020, NAFTA was expanding its activities abroad. In the UK, NAFTA started providing its own technical and underground gas storage services at Humbly Grove near London.
The year also brought expansion by the NAFTA Group into Ukraine, where it had already been active for close to five years. As a shareholder in EP Ukraine, NAFTA was successful in a tender and won two new licenses in Grunivska and Okhtyrska. Exploration also continued in Ukraine’s Uzhhorod and Vatazhivska licenses.
Prospective exploration in Slovakia
NAFTA and its partner continued to prepare for drilling identified exploration wells in the Trnava Exploration Area and conducted geochemical research and exploration near Topoľčany, which confirmed the area’s hydrocarbon potential. Meanwhile in the Trnava region, it was readying the Trakovice 14 exploration well.
Exploration also continued with a foreign partner at the Beša and Pavlovce nad Uhom wells, where 3D seismic data had already been evaluated. Benefits could accrue through economically viable hydrocarbon reserves.
Low-carbon energy is the future
NAFTA is seeking to leverage its many years of experience in storing natural gas into innovative energy storage projects for the crossover to low-carbon energy. The advantage of storing renewables such as hydrogen in existing natural gas storage facilities is their enormous capacity as well as the ability of seasonal storage.
No other technology today can warehouse as much energy as the storage of gas molecules. This is creating space not just for natural gas storage facilities, but also for the entire gas industry to become an important element in the low-carbon transformation of energy and the energy economy.
Interest in creating synergies with renewable resources is clearly evident with the pilot installation of solar panels at selected operations. “We believe that our developed infrastructure and long-term know-how will enable us to store hydrogen at our facilities along with natural gas,” added NAFTA CEO Bartošovič.
company profile of NAFTA
NAFTA is an international company with extensive experience in natural gas storage and underground facility development in Slovakia. It is also Slovakia’s leader in exploration and production of hydrocarbons. In Europe, the company actively operates gas storage facilities, explores and produces hydrocarbons and participates in renewable energy storage projects. In addition to Slovakia, the company is present in the Czech Republic, Germany, Great Britain, Austria, and Ukraine.More
NAFTA provides development, engineering and advisory services for facilities with overall storage capacity of approximately 64 TWh.Company history