Energy giant Equinor has signed an agreement to sell natural gas from the Norwegian Continental Shelf to Polish state-owned oil and gas company PGNiG.

The ten-year gas sale deal is expected to help the central European nation in diversifying gas supplies and boosting energy security amid the country’s efforts to replace Russian gas.

Under the agreement, Equinor will deliver approximately 2.4 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas per year to PGNiG via the new Baltic Pipe project.

The agreement is effective from 1 January 2023 to 1 January 2033.

The Baltic Pipe Project is designed to connect the Norwegian gas export system to Poland via Denmark.

Planned to start operations this year, the pipeline is being developed jointly by Polish GAZ-SYSTEM and Danish Energinet.

The pipeline is expected to have a capacity of nearly 10bcm per year, of which approximately 8bcm per year has been reserved by PGNiG.

PGNiG said in a statement: “According to the PGNiG strategy, the primary source of gas to be delivered via the Baltic Pipe will be PGNiG’s own production on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, which is expected to be three billion cubic metres this year and could rise to 4bcm per year by 2027.”

In April 2022, Russia cut its gas supplies to Poland due to its refusal to pay for gas in roubles.

Equinor marketing, midstream and processing executive vice-president Irene Rummelhoff said: “Equinor is a broad energy provider and has been a key supplier of gas to Europe for 45 years.

“Equinor is also working with local companies on developing large-scale offshore wind and solar projects in Poland, and we look forward to further developing our energy cooperation with PGNiG and Poland in the time to come.”