The European Commission has confirmed a drop in Russian gas supplies in nine countries as freezing weather conditions continue to grip Europe. Russian gas giant Gazprom has denied any cuts in its deliveries.
The European Commission put its gas coordination committee on alert on Friday after confirming that Russian gas deliveries to at least nine countries had fallen by up to 30 percent. The Commission insisted, however, the situation had not yet reached an emergency level.
Marlene Holzer, a spokeswoman for EU energy commissioner Guenther Oettinger, confirmed drops in supplies in
She said that the state-owned giant Gazprom was making use of flexibility clauses in its contracts as "there is exceptionally cold weather, and
Gazprom asserted on Thursday, however, that it had increased deliveries through a Ukrainian pipeline in response to a higher demand from EU states, implying that Naftogaz, the Ukrainian gas company, has been tapping into gas destined to Europe - a claim made by
Ukrainian Fuel and Energy Minister Yuri Boiko said
“We are taking gas in strict compliance with the contract, but because it isn't coming from
Gazprom on Friday insisted it was fulfilling all of its contracts. "Now these obligations are being carried out, but the customers are asking for larger volumes than we are obliged to supply to them," the head of pricing at Gazprom Export Sergei Komlev was quoted as saying.
The whole of
sb/ccp (AFP, AP, Reuters)