According to hints from Kremlin chief Putin, there are also increasing signs elsewhere that gas will flow through Nord Stream 1 again tomorrow. Reserved deliveries indicate this. However, the available data does not reveal with certainty whether and how much gas is actually coming.
Gas deliveries through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline have been announced for Thursday after the end of routine maintenance. This emerges from preliminary data from the network operator Gascade. Gascade operates the two receiving points of Nord Stream 1 in Lubmin in western Pomerania. According to the Gascade website, gas deliveries are reserved for both points. A Gascade spokeswoman had previously explained that these reservations - so-called nominations - are a prerequisite for the transport of significant quantities.
However, the registrations can still change until shortly before the actual delivery. Kremlin boss Vladimir Putin had already indicated that deliveries would continue after the maintenance. "Gazprom fulfills its obligations, has always fulfilled them and is willing to continue to fulfill all of its obligations," Russian agency Interfax quoted Putin as saying. During the past week and a half, no gas had been delivered to Germany through the last most important connection for Russian natural gas imports due to an annual routine maintenance. The federal government had feared that Putin could leave the gas tap closed afterwards.
After the Russian attack on Ukraine, the West imposed sanctions on Russia. Russia, in turn, has throttled gas supplies to European countries or stopped them altogether. The now noted gas deliveries at least indicate that gas is flowing again at all. However, the data now available do not reveal with certainty whether and how much gas will actually come from Thursday. It can be renominated until shortly before the actual start of delivery - this means that the information can be changed.
Delivery throttled before maintenance
Even before the maintenance of Nord Stream 1 began, the Russian state-owned company Gazprom had reduced deliveries through the more than 1,200-kilometer pipeline to 40 percent, citing the lack of a turbine as the reason. Putin recently warned of a further reduction in the delivery volume if Russia does not receive the turbine repaired in Canada. She was held back for a long time because of Western sanctions. Canada recently decided to hand over the turbine to Germany. The federal government sees the reference to the turbine as a pretext. Putin also revived the largely parallel Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which has been completed but is not in operation.
After the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Germany suspended the approval process for operating the line. Putin has said in the past that operating Nord Stream 2 could lower gas prices. It is conceivable that Moscow wants to force the commissioning of Nord Stream 2 by throttling Nord Stream 1. However, the Federal Network Agency said on Wednesday that the approval process would remain suspended.