Putin offers additional gas supply to Europe

Russian President Vladimir Putin addresses a plenary session of the Russian Energy Week forum in Moscow on Oct 12, 2022. (ALEXEY MAISHEV / SPUTNIK / AFP)

MOSCOW / PRAGUE – Russia is ready to deliver additional volumes of natural gas to the European Union in the autumn-winter period, President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday.

One of the two branches of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline has survived the recent leak incident and Russia is willing to send gas through it to Europe, Putin said at the plenary session of the "Russian Energy Week" international forum in Moscow.

Russian President Vladimir Putin called the sabotage of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines "an act of international terrorism" 

"Its capacity is 27.5 billion cubic meters per year, which is about 8 percent of all gas imports of Europe. Russia is ready to start such deliveries. The ball is on the side of the European Union," he said.

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Russia could also transfer the lost volumes through the Nord Stream pipelines to the Black Sea region and create key supply routes to Europe via Türkiye, "if, of course, our partners are interested in this," he added.

At the forum, Putin expressed concerns about unstable energy prices and an imbalance in supply and demand, and he criticized certain countries "who are guided solely by their own geopolitical ambitions, resort to outright discrimination in the market."

He called the sabotage of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines "an act of international terrorism." Putin said that those behind the sabotage sought to break ties completely between Russia and the European Union, weaken Europe's industrial potential and seize the market. 

EU proposals

European Union energy ministers held an informal meeting on Wednesday to discuss solutions for high gas prices, preparing for the energy situation this winter, and a possible revision of the electricity market.

Discussions aimed to define the European Commission's legislative proposals on joint gas purchases and possible price capping, according to a statement issued by the Czech Presidency of the EU after the meeting.

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The main elements of the proposal should include a functional platform for joint gas purchases, increasing the transparency of the Title Transfer Facility (TTF) price index, and strengthening its resilience to speculative behavior.

Joint purchases would help the entire 27-member bloc to achieve more favorable bulk prices for natural gas, which would help with soaring costs. This would especially help smaller countries gain market leverage, and could come into effect mid-way through next year.

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The ministers also discussed the energy preparedness of individual countries, the entire EU bloc and neighboring regions ahead of the winter season, as well as the functioning of the European electricity market.