Gazprom says European requirements being met after pipeline stoppage

A view shows pipelines near a gas processing facility, operated by Gazprom company, at Bovanenkovo gas field on the Arctic Yamal peninsula, Russia May 21, 2019. Picture taken May 21, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

MOSCOW, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Russia’s Gazprom (GAZP.MM) said European customers’ natural gas requirements were being met on Saturday after data from a German pipeline operator showed supplies through the Yamal – Europe pipeline via Poland to Germany had come to a halt.

Russia sends gas to western Europe by several different routes, including through Belarus and Poland using the Yamal – Europe pipeline, which has an annual capacity of up to 33 billion cubic metres.

Flows at the Mallnow metering point in Germany, which lies at the Polish border, stopped early on Saturday, according to data from Germany’s Gascade operator.

Russia’s state-controlled Gazprom said the requests of customers in Europe were being met. It added that fluctuations in demand for Russian gas were dependent on the actual needs of buyers.

A spokesman for Poland’s state-controlled PGNiG (PGN.WA) said flows from the east were much lower than usual, but Poland was still receiving amounts consistent with its contract.

Poland’s gas grid operator Gaz-System said on Saturday the Yamal pipeline was delivering gas to Poland via the Kondratki compressor station on the east and Mallnow on the west through “reverse mode” – meaning it was shipping gas from west to east.

“There is no demand for gas transit towards Germany currently,” a Gaz-System spokesperson said in an e-mailed statement.

Russian gas export flows have been closely watched as gas prices in Europe have soared amid economic recovery and low inventories.

Gazprom has been accused by the International Energy Agency and some European lawmakers of not doing enough to increase its natural gas supplies to Europe, but the Russian company has said it has been meeting its contractual obligations.

A gas transit deal between Russia and Poland expired last year, but Gazprom can book the transit capacity via the pipeline at auctions.

At the last auction on Oct. 18, Gazprom booked some 32 million cubic metres per day, or 35% of total additional capacity offered by the Polish operator Gas System for transit via the Kondratki transit point for November. read more

Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; Additional reporting by Anna Koper and Alan Charlish in Warsaw; Writing by Maria Kiselyova; Editing by Helen Popper and David Holmes

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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