After almost 20 years! Norandino gas pipeline reactivated in Argentina

Isbel Lázaro.

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Inspenet, October 5, 2023.

Growth opportunity for Argentina

Exports through the Norandino Gas Pipeline have resumed after a period of inactivity of 17 years. During the first seven months of this year, Chile has acquired Argentine natural gas worth US$556.4 million, which represents an increase of 86.8% compared to the same period of the previous year.

The energy surplus is presented as one of the main growth prospects in the generation of foreign exchange for Argentina. In this context, the provinces in the north of the country, such as Salta, represent an investment opportunity for the exploitation and export of natural gas to the countries of the region, with Chile being a preferential destination in constant consolidation.

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One of the particularities of energy cooperation with Chile is that it is established with continuous volumes throughout the year, which contributes to positioning Argentina as a constant energy supplier. To strengthen this collaboration, the restoration of the Trasandino Oil Pipeline, which connects Vaca Muerta with Chile, was launched last May.

The Secretary of Energy, Flavia Royón, specified that ” firm exports were authorized until April 2024 for 400,000 m3/d, which will be transported through the Norandino Gasduct from the province of Salta to the northern region of Chile.”

In turn, the official stressed that “these exports to the neighboring country are the result of the public policies contemplated in the Gas.Ar plan , promoted by Minister Sergio Massa and the launch of the first section of the President Néstor Kirchner Gasduct “.

About the Néstor Kirchner Gasduct

In less than 3 months since the inauguration of the Néstor Kirchner gas pipeline, sources from the state company Energía Argentina (previously Ex Enarsa) reported that they have already saved more than 550 million dollars in gas imports . This gas pipeline is a key infrastructure that allows gas to be transported from Vaca Muerta, the main source of production, to the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area (AMBA), the largest consumption center in Argentina.

The Ministry of Energy predicts that at the end of 2023, the country’s energy balance will be positive by 100 million dollars. Although it is recognized that it is not a significant figure, it represents an achievement that has not been achieved in more than a decade.

According to official estimates from the Ministry of Economy, in 2023 energy imports will be made for a total of 7,474 million dollars, while exports will reach 7,574 million dollars, thus generating a positive balance of 100 million dollars. Among the key factors contributing to this improvement are the reduction of import costs and the increase in export volume.

The achievement of an energy surplus occurs after a year in which the country experienced a historic deficit of 4,359 million dollars, due to imports that reached 12,868 million dollars as a result of the increase in international prices after the invasion of Russia to Ukraine.


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