The transit of Russian gas to Europe through Ukraine fell to its lowest level in four years in the first half of January, Serhiy Makohon, the chairman of Ukraine’s Gas Transmission System Operator, said in a post on Facebook on Jan. 19.
In the period from Jan. 1 to Jan. 16, the average daily transit of natural gas through the natural gas transmission system (GTS) of Ukraine amounted to 52.4 million cubic meters, Makohon wrote.
“For 16 days of Jan. 2019, the average daily transit volume was more than 250 million cubic meters of gas, in the COVID-19 (period of) 2020 - 83.4 million cubic meters, in 2021 - 124.6 million cubic meters, and in 2022 - only 52.4 million cubic meters of gas,” Mokohon wrote.
He stressed that Russia’s giant state gas company Gazprom had not booked additional transit capacity through Ukraine for February, despite an opportunity to lower gas prices for this heating season.
“The conclusions suggest themselves: Gazprom is not interested in helping EU countries during a time of crisis, (and) pressure on Europe to launch the Nord Stream 2 (undersea gas pipeline) continues,” Makohon said.
European leaders, including top EU diplomat Josep Borrell, have previously accused Russia of “weaponizing” gas supplies by slashing gas delivery volumes, thus pushing market prices to record highs.