Gazprom pipelines and export capacity

Газопроводы Газпрома и экспортные мощности

Gas pipelines of West Siberia

Газопроводы Западной Сибири

Export flows of Gazprom

Экспортные потоки

Spot, Gazprom, Brent

Цены на нефть и газ

End-use price of gas

Russia and USA

Daily gas production

Суточная добыча

Russia's Energy Transit Initiative of April 2009

Russia suggests an EU Gasplan (a)

The new energy initiative shows that Russia and the European Union hold absolutely opposite views on the future of the European gas market. While the EU promotes liberalization and free competition, Gazprom still wants to control the whole chain, from the gas well in West Siberia to the burner tip of the European consumer. Russia’s demand for “non-discriminatory investment promotion and protection, including new investments into all energy chain links” contradicts the EU Gas Directive that claims that the “unbundling of supply from transmission activities of integrated companies will serve to eliminate the conflict of interests.”

Russia’s proposal adds a new element to the Energy Doctrine proposed by Vladimir Putin three years ago in his letter to the Wall Street Journal. Putin advocated a “market” without competition between energy producers, and with high, regulated prices that never go down. The new document says the “market” should also have predictable demand. From the Russian point of view, an EU Central Gas Planning Committee (EU GasPlan) would be the best trading partner for Gazprom in Europe.

Russia is the country to be affected the most by its own energy transit concept. Russia is the only country in Europe and the CIS that forbids international transit of natural gas. Gazprom buys all foreign gas that gets onto the Russian territory, and resells it on its own terms. The new energy transit rules suggested by Russia would give Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan direct access to the European gas markets. Moreover, the Central Asian gas exporters would be able to monitor the transit flows in Russia, and have firsthand knowledge about the availability of spare capacity in Gazprom’s pipelines.

There is something Orwellian in Russia’s amendments to or replacement of the Energy Charter Treaty, which Russia has never ratified. Russia’s attitude toward the international transit of natural gas across its territory is the same as Joseph Stalin’s feelings about the 1929 Geneva Convention on prisoners of war, which the Soviet Union refused to join. As a matter of fact, Comrade Stalin never suggested amendments to the Geneva Convention .

Mikhail Korchemkin

May 1, 2009



France wants central gas buying body for Europe

(a) The text is written for RUSSIA PROFILE.ORG

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