“Shale perspectives” in Eastern Europe are challenged by delaying tactics of industry majors. Media coverage of shale gas development is positive but in Lithuania and Poland global oil & gas companies one by one drop bids to explore for unconventional. Lack of business awareness and overdependence on preliminary estimates of shale reserves may lead to the same result in Ukraine.
U.S. energy major Chevron, the only bidder to explore for unconventional hydrocarbons in the 1,800 square km Silute-Taurage field, has pulled out after winning a tender to explore for shale gas in Lithuania. “The fiscal, legislative and regulatory climate in Lithuania have substantially impacted the operational and commercial basis of the investment decision”, announced Chevron representatives. Business risk assessment resulted in the official statement which is highly disappointing for Lithuania’s politicians known for their harsh criticizm of Russian energy supplies. Crippled economy of deindustrialized post-Soviet republic struggling to survive on EU grants and subsidies is in dire need of natural gas for peak-shaving. So what’s to be done to explain the failure to the voters? “Let’s pray for shale gas”, proposed The Baltic Times covering Lithuania’s Speaker of the Seimas Vydas Gedvilas’s shale “road show” in the United States in the beginning of October 2013.