Latvia and Lithuania on Friday concluded a cooperation accord to diversity their gas supplies, the local media reported.
Under the memorandum of understanding, inked by Latvian Economics Minister Dana Reizenice-Ozola and Lithuanian Energy Minister Rokas Masiulis, the two Baltic countries will work on joint purchases from potential suppliers of liquefied natural gas.
Masiulis said that Lithuanian energy company LitGas was already in talks with a U.S company on gas supplies to Lithuania, which might start in early 2016, and that Latvian representatives were being kept abreast of the negotiations because Latvia, too, might apply to receive gas from the United States.
The memorandum of understanding will be effective until Dec. 31, 2017, but it can be extended if necessary.
Latvia is preparing to open up its gas market in a few years' time in accordance with EU requirements. On Oct. 14, the parliament economics, environment and regional policy committee endorsed draft amendments to the Energy Law providing for unbundling Latvijas Gaze natural gas utility, currently Latvia's gas monopoly, by separating gas distribution and sale from transmission and storage by 2017.