Ukraine Offers to Replace Nord Stream 2 with Its Own GTS

Naftogaz Ukraine is ready to provide additional gas transit from Russia to the EU through the gas transportation system of Ukraine in the amount of up to 55 billion cubic meters per year, Russian media reported.

This would be done with “approximately 151 million cubic meters per day on special terms; these volumes correspond to the capacity of Nord Stream 2, and there is free capacity for them in the Ukrainian gas transportation system,” said on Sunday the head of Naftogaz Yuriy Vitrenko on his Facebook page.

To this end, Naftogaz agrees to a 50% discount on the cost of gas transit from the Russian Federation, which has already been proposed by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky. But Zelensky did not name the volume of pumping.

The new Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is laid next to the same Nord Stream 1 and should be operational by the end of the year – after that, gas supplies from Russia to Germany through the Baltic Sea will double – to 110 billion cubic meters.

The maximum capacity of the Ukrainian gas transmission system is 145 billion cubic meters per year. Currently, about 40 billion cubic meters per year are pumped from Russia to the EU through Ukraine. The GTS capacity limit allows an increase of up to 100 billion cubic meters.

But the European authorities previously refused to buy the Ukrainian gas transportation system because of its deterioration. “They suggested: let’s take only the transit part and we will repair it, and deal with the rest yourself,” said Sergei Makogon, head of the Gas Transportation System Operator (GTS of Ukraine) company.

Transit of Russian gas through Ukraine increased in 2019 by 3% to 89.6 billion cubic meters. In December 2019, Russia, Ukraine, and the EU signed a new gas transit agreement for five years with the possibility of extension until 2034. The minimum guaranteed gas pumping from Russia will amount to 65 billion cubic meters in the first year and 40 billion cubic meters in the next four years.