Putin: Russia will not alt Gas Transit Through Ukraine

The launch of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline does not mean that the country will stop pumping gas through Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said, according to RIA Novosti.

“The pipelay of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is close to completion now; its commissioning will make possible to double potential Russian gas supplies over the Baltic route. This will be an extra contribution to the satisfaction of demand in Germany and other countries,” Putin said.

“I would like to stress that this is a purely commercial project. The government is not actually participating in it. I reiterated many times to avoid any interpretations and would like to say once again – it does not mean at all that Russia intends to stop transit through the territory of Ukraine,” the president added.

Russian and Ukrainian companies will hopefully find a mutually acceptable solution for natural gas transit to European countries, Putin said.

“As you are aware, we are holding talks with our Ukrainian partners now. They are underway in Vienna. As I see, bargaining positions are stated from both sides, fairly difficult for implementation, to put it straight,” the president said. “However, I hope participants in these negotiations, business companies in the first instance, will find acceptable solutions for them,” he noted.

Meanwhile, a German study said on Wednesday that Europe will not run short of gas this winter even if a new deal for deliveries of Russian gas through Ukraine is not completed when the existing agreement lapses at the end of the month.

“Gas supply for the winter is secure, even if the talks about gas shipments from Russia via Ukraine to Europe were to fail,” said the study, carried out by the Institute of Energy Economics (EWI) in Cologne.