Ukraine Warns of Threat to Gas Transit Volumes

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Russian gas transit flows to Europe via Ukraine remained steady on Thursday, but Moscow and Kyiv both warned of possible interruptions.

Ukrainian gas transmission system operator GTSOU said Russian forces and armed separatists from eastern Ukraine have tried to interfere with the operations of the Novopskov and Kupyansk compressor stations.

GTSOU said this poses a significant risk to shipments of Russian gas to customers in Ukraine and Europe that could “lead to a technological catastrophe in the region.”

The system operator said it had reported the issue to law enforcement agencies, government authorities and Russia’s dominant gas producer Gazprom.

Russia’s Deputy Energy Minister Pavel Sorokin said that GTSOU had sent a letter to Gazprom, stating that four compressor stations along the gas transit pipeline were at risk because of fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces.

Sorokin said the Novopskov and Kupyansk facilities were now held by Russian forces who would ensure that they continue to operate safely.

He said the other two, at Romny and Sumy, were controlled by Ukrainian forces, who would be responsible for any disruptions or incidents there.

GTSOU said Gazprom’s Ukraine transit nomination for Thursday was 109.4 million cubic meters, which is in line with the volumes agreed in a five-year contract signed in late 2019.

European gas prices remained volatile on Thursday.

The front-month Dutch TTF gas futures fell to €133 per megawatt hour ($42.4 per million Btu) from €155.88/MWh on Wednesday and €227.201/MWh on Monday.

However, prices remain well above their close of €88.33/MWh on Feb. 23, the day before Russia sent troops into Ukraine.

Gas Supply, Gas Pipelines, Military Conflict, Sanctions, Ukraine Crisis
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