The sooner Nord Stream 2 is commissioned and launched, the better chance the Russia-led gas pipeline to Germany will have to balance surging gas prices in Europe, including on the spot market, Kremlin spokesman
Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday.
“Obviously, the commissioning of Nord Stream 2 as soon as possible will substantially balance natural gas price parameters in Europe, including on the spot market,” Peskov told reporters in Moscow today, as carried by Russian news agency TASS.
Europe’s current natural gas demand is huge, and if the winter is colder than usual, even more gas will be needed, Peskov added.
Last Friday, Gazprom said it had completed the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, although gas flows on the controversial Russia-led pipeline cannot begin until Germany grants an operating license to the project.
Germany’s federal networks regulator BNA said earlier this week that it would decide no later than January 8, 2022, whether it will certify Nord Stream 2 and issue an operating license for the natural gas pipeline.
Europe is grappling with soaring natural gas and electricity prices ahead of the winter heating season due to tight gas supplies, very low gas inventories across the continent, and low wind power generation amid still weather.
During the summer, even with the strong rebound in European natural gas demand and surging prices, Gazprom did not book additional entry capacity to Europe via Ukraine.
Analysts say that this could have been an opportunistic move from the Russian giant to drive up Europe’s gas prices further and take advantage of what are now the highest prices in 13 years. Other analysts think that Gazprom’s effective reduction in supplies would force Europe to recognize that gas customers on the continent need the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline to Germany bypassing Ukraine.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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