Thursday, December 30, 2021

Putin promises a drop in gas prices in the West in exchange for the launch of NS2

 It is hard not to see that Putin is blackmailing Europe. On Wednesday, the head of Gazprom declared that the gas pipeline was ready for commissioning. Putin congratulated Gazprom and its five European partners on completing the project. He also stated that "the appearance of gas after certification of the pipeline will have an immediate impact on the gas price" in the European market and for European consumers.

"This new pipeline will certainly help stabilize prices on the European market," he announced.

According to the head of Gazprom, Alexei Miller, gas storage in Europe is 44 percent full, and in Germany - 47 percent. For several days, Gazprom has not been pumping gas through the Russian-European Yamal pipeline through Poland to Western Europe.

"Gazprom is not taking any steps to increase the volumes of supplies to Europe: no additional volumes of gas have been reserved for transit in the existing Ukrainian gas pipeline system for January."

Meanwhile, 20 tankers with American natural gas (LNG) are on their way to Europe. The gas prices in Europe have fallen since the announcement of the US deliveries, but they are still several times higher than a year ago. Buying LNG from the US is a temporary solution though and everyone knows that. Germany gave Putin the tools to get a grip on the European energy market and now there is no easy solution to the problem.

Nord Stream 2 has yet to be approved for use by the regulatory authorities of Germany and the EU. Its certification process is expected to be completed no earlier than the end of the first half of 2022.