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Putin Issues Ultimatum To Germany As EU Summit Exposes Energy Crisis Divide

natural gas pipeline

Vladimir Putin issued a stern ultimatum against Germany as EU leaders clashed over solutions to the energy crisis in Brussels.

EU leaders on Thursday struggled to agree on a common response to soaring energy prices, which have exposed familiar rifts over the bloc’s climate change goals and divided countries on whether the price crunch warrants an overhaul of EU energy market rules.

Jumping on divisions in the bloc, Russian President Vladimir Putin blamed the gas crisis and record-high prices on the EU’s energy policy.

The Russian leader said he could start supplying natural gas to Europe via the Nord Stream 2 pipeline as soon as it gets the green light from Germany.

The pipeline, funded by Kremlin-owned energy giant Gazprom and its European partners, is expected to obtain certification from a German regulator to begin commercial sales of natural gas, though the approval process could take several months.

“If the German regulator hands its clearance for supplies tomorrow, supplies of 17.5 billion cubic meters will start the day after tomorrow,” Putin told a televised forum.

The Swiss-based operator of Nord Stream 2 said on Monday that it had filled the first line of the pipeline with “technical” gas.

Putin said Russia was on track to complete filling the second line of the Nord Stream 2 undersea gas pipeline, which runs on the bed of the Baltic Sea to Germany, in the middle to the end of December.

Russia has said Nord Stream 2, which is set to double Moscow’s annual gas export capacity in the Baltic to 110 billion cubic meters, could provide relief to the European gas market, which has been grappling with tight supplies and soaring prices.

The European Commission last week published a “toolbox” outlining the national measures governments can take and said Brussels would look into longer-term options to address price shocks.

Read rest at Daily Express

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