Gazprom stops gas transit to Hungary via Ukraine

Released on 01.10. 2021

  • Pipes for the construction of the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline from Russia to Germany in the port of Mukran on the island of Rügen. Photo: Stefan Sauer

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Gas for Hungary will no longer be supplied from Russia via Ukraine after decades. Is Moscow using the gas delivery as a targeted weapon? Ukraine is pissed off.

Kiev (dpa) – To the annoyance of Kiev, the Russian gas company Gazprom has stopped gas transit via Ukraine to Hungary and is now using a bypass line through the Black Sea.

«For decades Hungary received gas through the territory of Ukraine, and the Ukrainian side did not even breach its obligations, ”said the head of the Ukrainian gas transport company, Serhiy Makohon, on Friday. The Ukrainian route is also the cheapest.

On October 1, a new gas supply contract between Russian and Hungarian companies came into force. Accordingly, 15 years each 4.5 billion cubic meters of natural gas south of the Ukraine will be transported through the Black Sea, Turkey, Bulgaria and Serbia Hungary flow. Due to bypass routes through the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea, Kiev is increasingly losing its status as the main transit country for Russian natural gas to the European Union.

Ukraine is losing billions in revenue as a result. Kiev therefore also speaks of Moscow using natural gas as a targeted weapon. The Kremlin rejects this. Relations between the two ex-Soviet republics have been shattered since the Russian annexation of the Ukrainian Black Sea peninsula of Crimea Journalists asked whether circumventing Ukraine was a breach of existing contractual obligations.

For weeks, gas prices on energy exchanges have been rising to record levels around the world. Energy experts see the greater demand for liquefied gas in China and Brazil as the main cause. Critics of the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline also accuse Gazprom of wanting to accelerate a pending approval process for the pipeline by means of targeted gas price gouging. However, the gas company rejects the allegations with reference to its own delivery bottlenecks.

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