Gazprom is grossly manipulating facts to justify its decision to further limit gas supplies to European countries, Olha Bielkova, Director for Government and International Relations at Gas Transmission System Operator of Ukraine (GTSOU), has said.
Earlier on Tuesday, Gazprom threatened to cut supplies to Moldova through Ukraine’s GTS due to alleged claims that “Russian gas intended for delivery to Moldovan consumers under a contract with Moldovagaz was being withheld in Ukraine.”
The GTSOU assured that all volumes of gas that were received at the Sudzha entry point from Russia, in particular, for further transportation to consumers in Moldova, were transferred to the Oleksiyivka and Hrebenyky exit points from Ukraine to Moldova in full. This is confirmed by all the necessary documents signed with related operators, one of which is Gazprom itself.
At the same time, since the beginning of September 2022, after many years of developments, Moldova has introduced a backhaul at the connection points with Ukraine, and since the end of September, the transportation of natural gas from Moldova to Ukraine through the Hrebenyky connection point is carried out precisely as backhaul.
“Backhaul is one of the most progressive commercial methods of the European gas market, which also helps to reduce the negative impact of gas transportation on the environment. By threatening to reduce the volume of transportation to Moldova, Gazprom is trying to deprive this country of the opportunity to use the Ukrainian GTS with UGS facilities and block the backhaul tool, thereby increasing dependence on Russian gas at the beginning of the heating season,” the GTSOU said.
“This is not the first time Russia has resorted to using gas as an instrument of political pressure. This is a gross manipulation of facts to justify its decision to further limit the volume of gas supplies to European countries. The introduction of standard European business rules for working at interstate connection points is deliberately interpreted by Gazprom as violation of contractual obligations, obviously, for political rather than commercial purposes,” Bielkova said.