Russia House

editorial

2018-01-15
Celebrating Russian Christmas in Brussels. High Politics and High Society Meet in the Grand Dining Room

by Gilbert Doctorow
More Information...
2018-01-15
The DemocratsТ СRussian DescentТ
Tactics in the Trump probe are starting to look a lot like McCarthyism.

By Kimberley A. Strassel
More Information...
2017-01-15

More Information...
2018-01-12
Social Media Madness: the Russia Canard

by NORMAN SOLOMON
More Information...
2018-01-12
Four Years of Ukraine and the Myths of Maidan
The history of the Ukrainian crisis, which has made everything it affected worse, is distorted by political myths and American media malpractice.

By Stephen F. Cohen
More Information...
2018-01-12
Where Are U.S.-Russia Relations Headed?
Andranik Migranyan shares his thoughts with the National Interest in an exclusive interview.

More Information...
2018-01-12
RUSSIAN FEDERATION SITREP 4 JANUARY 2018

BY PATRICK ARMSTRONG
More Information...
2018-01-11
Seeing the unseen in Ukraine: Why is America sending arms?
Unnoticed by the West, ceasefire talks continue, even as the Pentagon ships weapons to a corrupt Ukrainian regime

By Patrick Lawrence
More Information...
2018-01-11
Arming Ukraine provokes Russia
Trump administration's decision is counterproductive and dangerous

By Rajan Menon and William Ruger
More Information...
2018-01-11
The Times Rides to MuellerТs Rescue

By Patrick J. Buchanan
More Information...
Russia House

2017-09-13

Russia's Gazprom Rediscovers It Needs Ukraine

By Kenneth Rapoza

Gazprom has rediscovered it needs Ukraine.

With the Nord Stream pipeline down for maintenance in the Baltic Sea, Russia's only real alternative into Europe's lucrative gas market is via Ukraine. Russia's biggest gas exporter needs its old partner Naftogaz, at least until it finishes building the Nord Stream II line right besides the existing one that connects north Russia to Germany.

Naftogaz confirmed Monday that the Russians were indeed back (and not to take over vital parts of Ukrainian real estate, either).

Gazprom submitted an increased order of 315 million cubic meters (mcm) for gas to be shipped through Ukrainian pipelines into Europe over the weekend. The daily order for transmission of Russian gas through Ukraine has increased by 47 mcm over the past week alone, throwing Ukraine a much-needed cash infusion from Russia. For its part, Naftogaz said it was ready to "carry out the increased order in full", even though the order size is not stipulated by the existing contract between Naftogaz and Gazprom, the company said in a press release today.

These two have been going after each other in Swedish courts for over a year now, with one side unable to agree on contract clauses and pricing. Russian gas was part of the dispute that led to yet another color revolution in Ukraine. The Euromaidan of 2013-14 ended with the ouster of president Viktor Yanukovych after it became clear he reneged on a European trade deal in favor of getting Gazprom gas on the cheap.

The routine maintenance of Nord Stream will take around 11 days. Ukrainian systems do not shut down during maintenance, making it one of the most reliable gas transmission routes to Europe. But the ongoing divorce between Kiev and Moscow -- coupled with sanctions against Russia for its role in fomenting civil unrest among East Ukraine separatist movements -- Gazprom has quickly found other suitors.

Turkey's BOTAS Petroleum is building the Turkish Stream pipeline as an alternative to Ukraine. Wintershall, OMV, Engie and Shell are partners in the Gazprom-led Nord Stream II constortium. Both of these projects are seen damaging a decades old arrangement between Russian gas companies and Ukraine's Naftogaz.

In the first 8 months of 2017, 61.9 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas were delivered via Ukraine's gas transmission system to European consumers, up 23.4% from the same period last year and 45.6% from the same period in 2015, Naftogaz said. Most of it was not sourced from Gazprom.

Gazprom is still a major client for Naftogaz.

Last year, Gazprom used their pipelines to deliver over 80 billion cubic meters of natural gas, or roughly 46% of its Europe-bound gas deliveries, according to Naftogaz.

"Forbes.com"