Hungary is eyeing Poland as a possible source of natural gas imports as it strives to find alternative transit routes despite holding a lucrative long-term contract with Russia’s Gazprom.

In a social network post, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said Hungary had asked Poland to consider allowing it to buy and transport up to 200 million cubic metres per annum, initially from a planned liquefied natural gas import terminal at the port of Gdansk.

Szijjarto added that Polish Energy Minister Anna Moskwa had agreed with the preliminary proposal and the two governments “will give their political support to extend [existing] energy cooperation between Hungary and Poland to natural gas supplies”.

In August, Poland’s state oil, gas and petrochemical company Orlen said it had reserved the entire first phase capacity of the country’s second LNG import terminal in Gdansk, which was set at 6.1 billion cubic metres.

The first phase start-up is preliminarily scheduled for January 2028.

However, there are no firm commitments for the second phase, which will boost the terminal’s import capacity by a further 4.5 Bcm per annum, with Hungary understood to be looking at this option, according to Szijjarto.

Earlier in September, Poland’s transmission operator Gaz-System started an open season procedure to help gauge whether reported regional interest would translate into preliminary capacity bookings to justify bringing a second floating storage and regasification unit to Gdansk.

Companies interested in participating in this exercise were urged to submit registration documents by 29 September.

According to Szijjarto, this provides “an opportunity to plan a new delivery route” for Hungary, which traditionally imported gas from the south-east, such as the government’s recent plans to purchase gas from Turkey and Azerbaijan.