The Polish companies PGNiG and Gaz-System announced that they had received information from Gazprom about a complete halt in gas supplies to the republic from April 27. The corresponding statement of the company was distributed on Tuesday.
“On April 26, Gazprom informed PGNiG of its intention to completely suspend deliveries under the Yamal contract with the start of the contract day on April 27,” the report says.
PGNiG and the operator of the Polish gas pipeline network Gaz-System explained that at present all supplies to consumers are carried out in accordance with their demand. They noted that they are in control of the situation and are preparing for various scenarios.
“Gaz-System and PGNiG remain in constant contact and constantly monitor the situation related to the termination of supplies by Gazprom,” the statement emphasizes.
Earlier in the day, Gazprom spokesman Sergei Kupriyanov said that Gazprom did not confirm the suspension of gas supplies to Poland. According to him, at the moment the Polish authorities are obliged to pay for energy supplies in accordance with the new payment procedure.
At the same time, Piotr Naimsky, the authorized representative of the Polish government for strategic energy infrastructure, said that Warsaw would not pay for Russian gas in rubles. The politician noted that the country is ready for “all possible risks” associated with the cessation of supplies from the Russian Federation. After that, the Onet portal, citing unofficial data in government circles and the energy company PGNiG, announced the suspension of Russian gas supplies to Poland.
The leading expert of the National Energy Security Fund and the Financial University under the Russian government, Stanislav Mitrakhovich, in an interview with Izvestia, expressed confidence that it would not be easy for Poland to live without gas from the Russian Federation. According to him, despite the fact that gas storage facilities are well filled in this country, the industry, especially the chemical industry, consumes a lot of blue fuel – for example, Grupa Azoty SA, which produces nitrogen fertilizers based on gas. At the same time, the Baltic Pipe gas pipeline will be ready only by the end of the year.
The current contract for the supply of Russian gas to Poland was signed by Gazprom and PGNiG back in 1996. The agreement provides for an annual supply of at least 8.7 billion cubic meters. m of gas. The country’s consumption is 14 billion cubic meters. m.
Warsaw has previously stated that it is counting on Norwegian gas and the Baltic Pipe pipeline, with a capacity of 10 billion cubic meters. m, the launch of which is scheduled for the autumn of this year. Gas through it, if it is launched in October after all the tests, Poland will be able to receive no earlier than January 2023. To date, underground gas storage facilities (UGS) in Poland with a capacity of 3.8 billion cubic meters. m. of gas are 80% filled.
The West stepped up sanctions pressure on Russia in response to the conduct of a special operation of the Russian Federation in the Donbass. So, on February 28, the European Union approved the decision to freeze the assets of the Central Bank. In addition, the sanctions affected the sphere of high technologies and energy.
As one of the response measures, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that the Russian Federation would transfer payments for gas supplies to unfriendly countries, including all EU members, into rubles due to the loss of reliability of Western currencies. The corresponding decree was signed on March 31. Buyers were required to open ruble accounts in Russian banks from which gas payments are made. A number of G7 countries and the European Union considered the Russian demand a violation of contracts.