Head of Gazprom: The Role of Ukraine as a Gas Transporter Will Go Down to Zero

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Vzgliad Business Paper

“Nord Stream” and a Turkey pipeline will make the transit of gas through Ukraine meaningless, announced the head of Gazprom Alexey Miller in an interview to the TV program “Vesti on Saturday with Sergey Brilev”:  “Yes, in fact, the role of Ukraine as a transit country is reduced to zero,” – said Miller.

“The decision to stop the “South Stream” is a beginning of the end of our business model, when we focused on the delivery to a final consumer in the European market.”

At the same time, he noted that Russia will supply Ukraine with all its gas needs for domestic consumption. “In fact, we will provide the amount that Ukraine needs for its domestic consumption. Deliveries to Europe will be made by alternative routes,”- said Miller.

At the same time, he stressed that the cancellation of “South Stream” is not associated with the requirements of the Eurocommission’s third energy package. “The decision to shut down “South Stream” was adopted in the framework of the visit of our President to Turkey, but on this very day the pipelaying ship went out in the Black Sea in order to carry out work on laying the pipeline. But how can we proceed with this work, when Bulgaria did not even give permission to build in the territorial waters, in the special economic zone, and have not issued a construction permit to build on land… This issue has nothing to do with the third energy package,” – explained Miller.

In particular, explained the head of the company, the requirements of the European Commission have no relation to this situation, because “the construction permit is issued by the government of Bulgaria.”

According to Miller, frank blocking of “South Stream” is a deliberate policy of the European Union.
“As for the decision to stop the project… it is dictated by the fact that to implement the project in the atmosphere of delays and outright blocking, in principle, is impossible. And of course, it’s a deliberate policy of the European Union. On April 17 of this year the European Parliament adopted a resolution on the prohibition of South Stream,” – said Miller.

The head of Gazprom said that there is no guarantee that in the event of resurrecting the “South Stream” the situation with delays and blocking on part of the European Union will not be repeated.

“Actually, if you talk about the time, about the efforts that we invested (on “South Stream”) – it’s years. Of course, in addition to the time spent and money invested … we have acquired certain knowledge and experience… Now we can say that we know the European bureaucracy very well … Who can guarantee that this will not happen again in a month, two, six months?” – said Miller.

In turn, Brilev asked, if European countries will have to purchase gas on the border of Turkey and Greece. “Yes, without a doubt, that is correct,” – replied the head of Gazprom.

According to Miller, the infrastructure of Gazprom worth about 4 billion euros, built in Russia for “South Stream,” will be used for the Turkey gas pipeline project.

“We invested around 4 billion euros in transport infrastructure on the territory of Russia on the development of the southern corridor for gas supplies to Krasnodar region, for delivery to the compressor station “Russian”, and all of these investments will be needed for the offshore project for the pipeline to Turkey. So “everything stays in the house,” ” – said Miller.

Recall, on Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the country cannot under the present circumstances continue implementation of “South Stream”. This decision, as later stated by the Minister of Energy Alexander Novak, was adopted by Putin personally.

Translated by Kristina Rus

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