European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen on Monday (November 20) announced together with the President of Brazil, the EU would support a 10GW hydrogen and ammonia production facility on the Brazilian State of Piaui.

Hydrogen and ammonia produced at the so-called Green Energy Park will be shipped to the island of Krk in Croatia. Hydrogen will then be used by industrial off-takers in Southeast Europe.

The Croatian import terminal is planned to launch with an initial capacity for 10 million tonnes of ammonia. Staged development will see the hydrogen carrier traded through on-site bunker vessels before a 100,000m3 ammonia storage tank is completed in mid 2027.

Speaking virtually at the start of European Hydrogen Week, von der Leyen said the Brazilian arm of the project came as part of a €2bn Global Gateway investment in the nation’s hydrogen value chain.

“Europe is not only a clean hydrogen pioneer, but also a partner – to build a worldwide hydrogen market,” the European Commission President said. “With these public investments we are helping attract and mobilise massive private capital.”

The EU’s Global Gateway had been branded as a way to narrow the global investment gap in digital, energy and transport sectors.

However, the funding comes as the bloc looks to meet its 2030 REPowerEU targets of importing 10 million tonnes of renewable hydrogen, in addition to domestically producing the same volume.

Having also announced plans for a second European Hydrogen Bank auction round to award up to €3bn ($3.28bn) in subsidies to domestic renewable hydrogen producers, von der Leyen said the Commission was working on the “international leg” of the Bank.

Read more: von der Leyen announces €3bn European Hydrogen Bank auction round in 2024

The Commission’s international moves come shortly after the Hydrogen Council released an updated version of its Global Hydrogen Flows report, where it stressed the need for international hydrogen trading to reduce the cost of the energy carrier.

Finding the levelised cost of hydrogen (LCOH) for renewable hydrogen was 30-65% higher in 2023 compared to the 2022 report, the update stressed the long-distance transportation of hydrogen and derivatives would reduce overall investments.

Read more: Current hydrogen uptake not strong enough for Net Zero, Hydrogen Council warns

“The relatively low transport costs could potentially make long-distance trade in derivatives from lower-cost centres competitive with local supplies in high-cost markets,” it added.

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