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Gazprom threatens to end Russian gas transit via Ukraine

by Martin Fornusek July 8, 2023 2:06 AM 2 min read
Gazprom PJSC Slavyanskaya compressior station, the starting point of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, in Ust-Luga, Russia, Jan. 28, 2021. (Photo credit: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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Russia may impose sanctions against Ukraine over Ukrainian oil and gas company Naftogaz' lawsuits against Russian gas giant Gazprom, Alexei Miller, CEO of the Russian gas firm, said on July 7, as cited by Interfax.

This may lead to the end of cooperation between Russian companies and Naftogaz, Miller warned.

Despite Russia's aggression against Ukraine, the transit of Russian gas through Ukrainian territory to Europe still continues.

Naftogaz filed a lawsuit against Gazprom with the International Court of Arbitration in Paris in September 2022. It asked for overdue payments from Gazprom for gas transit through Ukraine.

Naftogaz CEO Vitrenko: ‘Russian gas is a weapon’
Yuriy Vitrenko’s desk, buried in paperwork, leaves little room for doubt – the winter of 2022 will be hard for Ukraine. Naftogaz, Ukraine’s energy monopoly, will face an uphill battle to provide enough gas for this year’s heating season, CEO Vitrenko told the Kyiv Independent. He said that this wi…

The Russian company rejected Naftogaz's demands.

Miller also reminded that Naftogaz had also filed a $5 billion lawsuit at a U.S. court against Russia for lost property in occupied Crimea.

"If Naftogaz continues such unscrupulous actions ... then any relations between Russian companies and Naftogaz will be simply impossible," he said.

Ukrainian Energy Minister Herman Halushchenko told the Financial Times on June 22 that the renewal of Naftogaz' contract with Gazprom is unlikely after 2024 due to Russian aggression.

The point of contest between the two companies was the transit through the Sokhranivka facility in Luhansk Oblast. In May 2022, Naftogaz was forced to stop transit through Sokhranivka due to Russian occupation and offered its Russian counterparts to pump more gas through another access point.

Russia, however, refused to increase the transit and to pay for Ukraine's losses.

Miller accused Naftogaz of using Sokhranivka as a fabricated pretext, saying that the Ukrainian company does not accept Russian gas at the access point in question but demands payment for it anyway.

Naftogaz seeks to get $5 billion compensation from Russia via US court
Ukrainian state-owned oil and gas company Naftogaz announced on June 23 that it had filed a lawsuit with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against Russia for property loss in Crimea, asking for $5 billion in compensation.

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