Russian Energy Minister Nikolai Shulginov indicated that the rejection of the “North Stream-2” project may lead to losses for a number of companies from the European Union, who are “Gazprom” partners in the project.
According to the Russian minister, these companies can resort to the court to obtain compensation for losses incurred in the event of abandoning the project, which consists of two gas pipelines from Russia to Germany that were laid across the bottom of the Baltic Sea.
The Russian minister’s statement came in an interview with “Energy Intelligence” newspaper, which took place on the sidelines of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum, held in the Qatari capital, Doha, under the slogan “Natural Gas: Shaping the Energy Future”.
He said, “Several European companies participated in the implementation of the project. These will be losses for them, and they must be compensated for the losses. These companies can go to court, we proceed from the fact that the issue of gas supplies should not be politicized.”
The minister added that many in Europe now have reasonable approaches and understand that the European Union needs to increase gas supplies and use the capabilities of “North Stream-2”, since the launch of the project will create a surplus in gas supplies in Europe.
And “North Stream-2” is a Russian project to build two natural gas pipelines with a length of 1,200 km each, with a total capacity of 55 billion cubic meters annually from the Russian coast across the bottom of the Baltic Sea to Germany.
And now work is underway to issue permits in Germany to pump Russian gas through this route, amid procrastination from European bodies.
Russian Energy Minister: Europe needs to prepare for the coming winter
Shulginov believes that European countries now need to prepare for the upcoming winter, as gas storage facilities in European countries are almost empty.
He said, “We see that the gas storage facilities are empty (in Europe) and the reserves of some of them are used by 97% because the Europeans are trying to consume the gas that was pumped at a low price.”
According to the minister, the only alternative to Russian gas in Europe is “renewable energy and coal generation,” so the European Union countries need a reasonable approach in light of the current gas crisis in Europe.
Shulginov also indicated that it is unlikely that LNG will become a substitute for natural gas pumped through pipelines.
Russian Energy Minister: The gas market does not need regulation like “OPEC +”
Shulginov believes that Russia does not currently see the need to regulate gas supplies in the global gas market, as “OPEC +” does with oil, since the gas is pumped through pipelines under long-term gas contracts.
According to the minister, it is now necessary to fight the ideas that gas is not a suitable fuel for the energy transition, and that it produces high emissions of greenhouse gases.
It is noteworthy that the Emir of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, inaugurated this morning, Tuesday, the sixth summit of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum, which is being held in Doha under the slogan “Natural Gas: Shaping the Future of Energy”.