German and Algerian officials yesterday signed a declaration of intent to co-operate on green hydrogen, with a focus on supporting the build-out of infrastructure in Algeria for large-scale production and export to Europe.
As part of the agreement, the German government will provide €20m ($21.5m) in funding for the set-up of a 50MW green hydrogen pilot plant by national oil company Sonatrach in the Algerian city of Arzew.
“Germany and Algeria have maintained a close energy partnership since 2015,” said Robert Habeck, Germany’s vice-chancellor and minister for economy and climate action. “We now want to expand this and encourage Algeria to produce more green hydrogen in the future, to invest more in solar and wind energy and thus create new value creation of its own.”
He added: “We want to support you with know-how and technical expertise. Germany and the EU are ready as potential buyers of green hydrogen. Now it is a matter of creating the necessary technical and economic conditions for hydrogen supplies between Algeria and Europe.”
Algeria is already one of the world’s largest exporters of natural gas, with pipelines sending the fossil fuel to both Italy and Spain. The North African country’s national hydrogen roadmap, published in March 2023, aims to underpin its current position with a target 10% share of Europe’s H2 supply by 2040.
Italy is already in the process of expanding its gas connection to Algeria, with plans for hydrogen supply through the new pipelines via Tunisia as part of Europe’s “SoutH2 corridor” by 2030.
Hydrogen pipelines linking up Italy to Austria and Germany have already been included in the European Commission’s sixth list of Projects of Common Interest, which if approved would accelerate permitting and unlock potential financial support.
The SoutH2 corridor would be capable of transporting four million tonnes of H2 a year, or around 40% of Europe’s target for ten million tonnes of hydrogen imports by 2030.