Algerian-German hydrogen task force launched: EU looks to secure supply

Germany and Algeria are establishing a hydrogen task force as the two nations reveal intentions to work together more closely on green hydrogen production.

Under the plans, Germany has said the North African country should be supported in setting up hydrogen infrastructure and production – adding that a hydrogen pilot plant will be installed.

Hoped to promote framework conditions for the production, storage and transport of green hydrogen and its derivatives, the Algerian-German hydrogen task force comes as Germany looks to secure an imported supply of the energy carrier.

Robert Habeck, German Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK), said the European nation wants to “encourage Algeria” to produce more hydrogen in the future.

“We want to support you with know-how and technical expertise,” he said. “Germany and the EU are available as potential buyer countries for green hydrogen. Now it’s about creating the necessary technical and economic conditions for hydrogen deliveries between Algeria and Europe.”

Through the cooperation, provide sector investments in both countries are hoped to be supported to “contribute to energy security in Europe,” while driving forward Net Zero goals.

The declaration of intent was signed after an exchange of ministers and business representatives – including those from the European Commissions, Italy, Austria and Tunisia, who the BMWK said support the creation of a southern hydrogen corridor.

Last May (2023), plans were revealed to combine hydrogen pipeline projects in Tunisia, Italy, Austria and Germany to establish a 3,300km hydrogen-ready corridor which could deliver 40% of the Europe’s imported hydrogen demand in 2030.

Read more: Italy, Austria, Germany tie up on hydrogen pipeline project

Now, the BMWK has said, “This envisages the conversion and expansion of the existing gas pipeline corridor for renewable hydrogen, from Algeria via Tunisia, Italy and Austria to southern Germany. Algeria aims to become a major producer of green hydrogen and aims to export 10 percent of the EU’s needs by 2040.”

The task force announcement comes after Berlin in July 2023, 50-70% of its predicted 95-130tWH hydrogen demand in 2030, would be met by imports.

Read more: Germany doubles domestic hydrogen production target to 10GW while planning import strategy

Germany recently confirmed and additional contribution to the European Investment Bank’s (EIB’s) Green Hydrogen Fund to provide grants to developing countries by subsidising investments and advisory services.

2023 analysis by Aurora Energy Research concluded renewable hydrogen imports to the EU could compete with domestic production as soon as 2030.

Read more: Renewable hydrogen imports could be cost competitive with domestic EU production in 2030

The analytics company has said that the EU could feasibly import hydrogen from Australia, Chile, Morocco, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by 2030, all of which have high renewable energy power generation potential and existing developer interest in hydrogen export projects.

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