The European Union can only blame its own policies for record gas prices: Putin

The European Union can only blame its own policies for the record gas prices, as some of its members are reselling cheap Russian gas at much higher prices within the bloc, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday.

Putin also called on the EU to approve a new Russian gas route, the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, to ease the price crisis.

The benchmark gas price in Europe hit a new record on Tuesday, up nearly 800% since the start of the year. The price fell on Friday, but it was still up over 400%.

Nord Stream 2 faces opposition from the United States and in particular from several Eastern European states, who say the pipeline will make the EU even more dependent on Russian gas, which already supplies 35% of needs in gas from the block.

The Russia-Germany gas pipeline, built in September, is still awaiting regulatory approval from Berlin and Brussels.

“The additional gas supplies on the European gas market would surely reduce the price on an exchange, on the spot (of the market),” Putin said, as quoted by the RIA news agency at a joint meeting of the Council of State and a council of science and education.

Adding to the compression, the Yamal-Europe pipeline that usually sends Russian gas to Western Europe was flowing upside down for a fourth day on Friday, pumping fuel from Germany to Poland, operator data showed. of the German Gascade network.

Russian gas giant Gazprom has not reserved gas transit capacity for exports via the Yamal-Europe pipeline for December 25, according to auction results. Read more

Gazprom usually reserves capacity via road in the short term, after Poland and Russia opted not to extend their long-term transit agreement last year.

Putin said Poland had “sidelined” Russia from managing the Yamal-Europe pipeline, which operated in reverse mode by sending gas east. The pipeline connects Russia to Belarus, then to Poland and Germany.

“It does not increase the volumes of Russian gas in the European market, therefore the price increases,” Putin said according to the Interfax news agency, of the reverse flows.

Putin said Thursday that Germany was reselling Russian gas to Poland and Ukraine rather than relieving an overheated market. Read more

In Ukraine, another transit route for Russian gas to Europe, the head of the gas transport operator said Gazprom had reduced daily gas transit through Ukrainian territory to 87.7 million cubic meters ( mcm) against 109 mcm.

“The reduction in gas supplies to the European Union at a time when prices were reaching $ 2,000 suggests that these are not economic decisions but purely political ones, aimed at increasing pressure on the EU to launch Nord Stream 2 under the Russian Federation, “he added. Makogon wrote on Facebook.

The benchmark price for European gas climbed above 2,200 euros ($ 2,495) for 1,000 cubic meters on Tuesday.

Makogon said Europe has set a record for extracting gas from storage due to supply shortages.

Russia has repeatedly rejected accusations that it has played politics on gas and has said it is paying all the amounts it has pledged to provide. Companies with supply agreements also said their contracts were honored.


Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak also said Europe was short of additional Russian supplies due to Nord Stream 2 delays.

“In my opinion, European consumers are very interested in the project to start working, while the companies, which participate in it, could have submitted additional requests within the framework of long-term relations on gas supplies through this new pipeline, ”he added. Rossiya-24 told Russian public broadcaster. Read more

He also said EU leaders made mistakes in reducing reliance on long-term supply agreements in favor of the spot market, where prices are more volatile.

“Countries, which receive gas through long-term agreements, receive it much cheaper,” Novak said.

The flue gas market in Europe could find some relief from the reorientation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments from Asia, as European prices make this diversion attractive. Read more

Gazprom, which holds the monopoly on Russian gas exports by pipeline, did not reserve gas transit capacity for exports through the Yamal-Europe pipeline for December 24, auction results revealed on Friday.

Gascade data on the Yamal-Europe pipelines showed throughputs at the Mallnow metering point on the German-Polish border going from Germany to Poland at an hourly volume of approximately 1,218,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh / h) Friday and had to stay at these levels during the day.

Data from Slovak gas pipeline operator Eustream showed that capacity nominations for Friday’s Russian gas flow from Ukraine to Slovakia through the Velke Kapusany border point were 739,843 MWh, compared to 785,160 MWh on Thursday. .

This decline was offset by higher nominations for flows from the Czech Republic to Slovakia, meaning that nominations for flows from Slovakia to the Austrian Baumgarten hub were roughly stable compared to the previous day.

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