Hydrogen hype: Why the EU should be cautious about uncertain imports from far-flung places

February 13, 2024

T&E's analysis of Europe's hydrogen import strategy

Europe is on the hunt for hydrogen in its effort to decarbonise. The EU’s RePowerEU plan aims for 10 Mt of renewable hydrogen produced in the EU and 10 Mt of imports by 2030. 

While trade discussions with potential exporting countries keep being announced, it is not yet clear what the impacts of hydrogen imports could be. T&E commissioned Ricardo to assess the EU’s needs for hydrogen imports and evaluate their potential risks and benefits, through six case-studies of ambitious exporting countries: Chile, Egypt, Morocco, Namibia, Norway and Oman.

The study shows that the EU should be cautious about relying on uncertain imports to meet its overly-ambitious hydrogen targets. Despite the big hype around hydrogen, just 1% of the planned green hydrogen production in the countries assessed has received financing. Europe should focus on developing its own supply before turning to countries which, in many cases, are not able to rapidly scale up hydrogen production and lack the necessary infrastructure to export hydrogen.


*Original report completed by Ricardo on behalf of T&E. T&E’s briefing also draws on other sources.

Related Articles

View All