EXCLUSIVE-Gazprom says Nord Stream 1 takeover depends on Siemens Energy
Russia’s largest gas pipeline to Europe will not resume pumping until Siemens Energy repairs faulty equipment, Gazprom deputy chief executive Vitaly Markelov told Reuters on Tuesday.
Europe is facing its worst gas supply crisis, with energy prices soaring and German importers even discussing possible rationing in the European Union’s biggest economy after Russia reduced flows to the west. Gazprom said on Friday that the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline, Europe’s main supply route, would remain closed because a turbine at a compressor station leaked engine oil, sending wholesale gas prices skyrocketing. gas.
When asked when Nord Stream 1 would start pumping gas again, Markelov told Reuters on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Russia’s Pacific port of Vladivostok: “You should ask Siemens. They have to d first repair the equipment.” Siemens Energy, headquartered in Munich, Germany, said on Tuesday it did not understand Gazprom’s presentation of the situation.
He said an engine oil leak at the last operating turbine at the Portovaya compressor station was not a reason to keep the pipeline closed. “We cannot understand this new representation based on the information provided to us over the weekend,” Siemens Energy said in a written statement.
“Therefore, until further notice, our assessment is that the finding communicated to us does not represent a technical reason for an outage. Such leaks do not normally affect the operation of a turbine and can be plugged on the spot,” he added. ENERGY WAR?
The Kremlin blames the energy crisis on sanctions imposed on Russia by the West for what President Vladimir Putin calls his “special military operation” in Ukraine. European leaders say Moscow is using the energy to blackmail the EU. Nord Stream 1, which runs under the Baltic Sea to Germany, is by far the largest Russian gas pipeline to Europe, transporting up to 59.2 billion cubic meters of gas per year.
Once seen as a symbol of cooperation between one of the world’s biggest energy powers and the world’s fourth largest economy, Nord Stream is now the subject of recriminations between Berlin and Moscow. European politicians say Putin, Russia’s supreme leader since the last day of 1999, is using his influence at the helm of one of the world’s biggest energy powers to stoke discord in Europe over the conflict in Ukraine.
European politicians dismiss Gazprom’s explanations of the turbine problems as a pretext. But the Kremlin says the West triggered the energy crisis by imposing the toughest sanctions in modern history, a move Putin says amounts to a declaration of economic war.
The Kremlin also warned that Russia would retaliate to a G7 proposal to impose a price cap on Russian oil, a move that should not harm Russia unless China and India follow suit. . Russian Energy Minister Nikolai Shulginov said in Vladivostok on Tuesday that Russia would respond to the price cap by shipping more oil to Asia. He said Russia and its partners are considering setting up an insurer to facilitate oil trade.
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