Russia’s gas giant Gazprom said it was “technically impossible” to reroute gas flows to Europe via Ukraine, after the Ukrainian Gas Transmission System Operator (GTSOU) stopped flows from one entry point in the Russia-controlled Luhansk region in eastern Ukraine.
Gazprom stopped the transit from the Sokhranivka gas metering station early on Wednesday local time, the Ukrainian operator said today.
On Tuesday, GTSOU said it would no longer be able to accept gas transit from Russia via the Sokhranivka entry point. The move has the potential to disrupt supplies to Europe if an alternative path isn’t found.
Sokhranivka is a key entry point on the border between Russia and Ukraine. Nearly one-third of the Russian gas headed through Ukraine goes through Sokhranivka, which is now under force majeure. The GTSOU said in a statement on Tuesday that it could not operate at its Novopskov gas compressor station in Luhansk due to “the interference of the occupying forces in the technical processes.”
The Ukrainian operator also said there were “unauthorized gas offtakes from the gas transit flows,” which endangered the stability and safety of the entire Ukrainian gas transportation system.
GTSOU has stated that the gas flows could be rerouted through the Sudzha interconnection point—controlled by Ukraine.
Gazprom, for its part, said via a spokesman in a Telegram that rerouting of gas to the Sudzha entry point was “technically impossible under the Russian flow scheme,” Independent Commodity Intelligence Services (ICIS) reported.
The Ukrainian operator GTSOU said on Wednesday that it is actually possible to transfer gas flows to the Sudzha entry point, which has more than enough capacity to accommodate gas flows.
“A similar transfer of capacity from Sokhranivka to Sudzha took place from October 12 to 25, 2020, due to scheduled repairs. At that time, gas transit through the Sudzha entry point was 165.1 million cubic meters per day. Therefore, the allegations about the impossibility of transferring flows from Sokhranivka to Sudzha point do not correspond to reality,” the Ukrainian operator said.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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