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Tsvetana Paraskova

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Tsvetana is a writer for the U.S.-based Divergente LLC consulting firm with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and…

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Putin Assures Trump: Russia Will Keep Ukraine Gas Transit

Putin Trump 2

Russian President Vladimir Putin has assured U.S. President Donald Trump that Moscow will keep the transit route of natural gas to Europe via Ukraine, Russia’s president said at the joint news conference after the two leaders’ summit in Helsinki.

Russia and its gas giant Gazprom are planning another natural gas pipeline to Western Europe—the highly controversial Nord Stream 2 to Germany, a twinning of the already operational Nord Stream pipeline.

The Russian-led project has received a lot of criticism by the European Union (EU), and lately by U.S. President Trump. Several EU countries and the European Commission fear that Nord Stream 2 would further boost Russia’s dominance on the European gas market. For Russia, apart from an additional export outlet for its gas in Europe, the Nord Stream 2 route allows it to bypass the transit route via Ukraine for supplies to Europe.

Speaking at the joint news conference on Monday, Putin said:

“Then, about the Nord Stream 2, Mr. President voiced his concerns about the possibility of disappearance of transit through Ukraine. And I reassured Mr. President that Russia stands ready to maintain this transit. Moreover, we stand ready to extend this transit contract that is about to expire next year, in case — if the dispute between the economic entities dispute will be settled in the Stockholm Arbitration Court.”

Gazprom and Ukraine’s gas company Naftogaz are currently locked in a bitter dispute over natural gas deliveries, pricing, and payments.

President Trump, for his part, said that the United States will be “selling LNG and we’ll have to be competing with the pipeline. And I think we’ll compete successfully, although there is a little advantage locationally. So I just wish them luck. I mean, I did. I discussed with Angela Merkel in pretty strong tones. But I also know where they’re all coming from. And they have a very close source. So we’ll see how that all works out.”

“And I think we’ll be out there competing very strongly,” President Trump added.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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  • Michael Scott on July 17 2018 said:
    Testing
  • Mamdouh G Salameh on July 17 2018 said:
    If this is the case, then President Putin will demand a quid pro quo from President Trump in the form of less resistance to the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline which will transport Russian gas supplies under the Baltic to Germany and the European Union (EU) or a de facto American acceptance of Russia’s occupation of the Crimea or a withdrawal of American forces from Syria thus acknowledging the pre-eminent position of Russia in Syria.

    The German foreign minister Heiko Maas said “it is important that the US and Russia talk to each other. We can’t allow silence to be in place between Washington and Moscow on Syria, Ukraine, arms control and disarmament”. He also pointed out that the following months would show how resilient the Helsinki summit was for international relations.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Visiting Professor of Energy Economics at ESCP Europe Business School, London
  • Douglas Houck on July 18 2018 said:
    Mamdouh:

    My read of the transcripts is that the US is not going to stop Nordstream 2. He says it is a straight forward commercial project, one which the US is willing to compete against, although President Trump acknowledges there is a locality advantage to Russian gas.

    Reading the full transcript is worth the time. The US press is remiss in its duties by only focussing on Russian involvement in the last election. So much more was said between the two countries. What's not to like about reducing tensions between the two countries that can exterminate most life on the northern hemishere?
    https://www.cnn.com/2018/07/16/politics/trump-putin-news-conference-transcript/index.html

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