The adoption of Compress Natural Gas (CNG) as a transportation fuel in the Czech Republic continues to expand, evidenced by increased CNG sales and a broadening supply network. During 2016, Bonett Gas Investment retained its position as the Czech Republic’s largest vendor of CNG for transport, selling 7.5 million m3 of CNG, up by almost 13% year-on-year. The company will add 10 stations to its network in 2017, selling CNG branded as ‘Eurogas’.
“Low prices of conventional fuels competed with CNG throughout 2016, but our and others’ results show that CNG is becoming increasingly popular and not only amongst businesses,” says Václav Holovčák, Bonett Gas Investment Vice-Chairman.
The continued rollout of the company’s proprietary fuelling station network also helped to achieve another record-breaking year. “We opened additional new stations; at the end of 2016, we operated 24 stations and we want to have 40 stations by the end of 2017,” comments Václav Holovčák, adding: “We expect sales to the tune of 10 million m3 of natural gas from our CNG stations. We have opened additional new CNG stations at an OMV station in Havlíčkův Brod and at a Shell station in Hodonín, and are currently investing in CNG stations in the Makro/Metro hypermarket chain.”
This year, Bonett wants to invest another up to CZK 150 million in building new and reinforcing and upgrading existing stations. “We are also considering the development of our own LNG projects and a major biomethane production plant as a source of renewable natural gas,” says Holovčák.
Bonett now accounts for the dominant share of total CNG consumption for transport in the Czech Republic. “We expect the market to grow by up to 30% this year. Our company promotes the growth in CNG consumption through a system of special discounts for municipalities and the central government, and potentially for other CNG users. This support should help set the market in motion,” Holovčák says in the company press release.
Growing CNG consumption is supported by the continuously rising number of CNG passenger cars, of which there are currently some 15,000 in this country while more than 1% of new cars are added every year, and also by a large number of subsidised buses. The number of buses has doubled over the past two years: more than 1,000 gas-fuelled buses are currently in operation in 50 Czech towns and cities. “Almost half of them are filled on equipment supplied by our group,” says Václav Holovčák, adding: “In Ostrava and Brno, we have built stations with an output of approximately 4,000 cubic metres of gas per hour each, which makes them the two largest CNG stations in Central Europe. Each of them fills more than 100 buses every day.”
Bonett operates 24 CNG filling stations, innogy Energo operates 21 and E.ON Energie operates 19, according to figures supplied by the Czech Gas Association. Operating in the Czech and Slovak markets the Group focuses on building, operating and delivering alternative fuel filling stations.
(Source: Bonett Group)