Gazprom now says it cannot guarantee Nord Stream operation

The Russian gas firm Gazprom assured this Wednesday (07/13/2022) that it has no evidence that the return of the Siemens turbine retained in Canada has been authorized and warned that it cannot guarantee the safe operation of the Nord Stream gas pipeline, which supplies to Europe via the Baltic Sea. The Canadian government announced on Saturday that it will deliver the turbine to Germany, and not to Russia, as initially planned.

“Gazprom does not have a single document that allows Siemens to take out of Canada the gas turbine engine for the Portovaya compression station, which is being repaired there,” the company said in a statement. “Under these circumstances, it is not possible to draw an objective conclusion about the future development of the situation to ensure the safe operation of the station, which is a critical facility for the Nord Stream gas pipeline,” it added.

The operation of the gas pipeline is interrupted for ten days due to maintenance operations. European countries fear that Russia will permanently interrupt their gas deliveries, alleging technical reasons, to pressure them in a context of conflict in Ukraine. Even before Nord Stream stopped working, Russia had sharply reduced its supply in recent weeks, assuring that it was due to the lack of Siemens turbines, necessary – according to Moscow – for the gas pipeline’s compression stations to work.

The return of the turbine located in Canada was stopped by the sanctions imposed on Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine. The Canadian government specified that the delivery of the turbine had been authorized so as not to submit to the “blackmail of the Kremlin”, which would seek to divide the allies through energy pressure. According to German media, after the delivery of the turbine to Germany, it it would be transported “as soon as possible” to the compression station near St. Petersburg.

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The European Commission expressed its satisfaction with the decision of the Canadian authorities, considering that this “eliminates” one of the excuses used by the Vladimir Putin regime to reduce the supply of gas to the German market. On the other hand, after the announcement, the Ukrainian government summoned the Canadian ambassador to Ukraine on Monday to protest what he considers “an absolutely unacceptable exception to the sanctions regime against Russia.”

DZC (EFE, AFP, Europa Press)

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