Published on: 10/06/2021 – 00:23
Russia’s Gazprom has started filling Nord Stream 2. A new step, but it will take several more months for the valve of the controversial gas pipeline to open.
Putting the Nord Stream 2 on gas is a normal technical step, but also one less hurdle on the way to commissioning the pipeline. Perhaps also a way for Gazprom to break through, while waiting for authorizations for commissioning to be granted by Germany, the main partner and main beneficiary of the project, and by the European Commission.
Because by introducing gas into the pipelines, Russia is taking a step forward: in fact, it takes months to fill a 1,230-km-long pipe. So on the day Gazprom receives the green light, if the two Nord Stream 2 pipelines that pass under the Baltic Sea are full, the gas will be immediately available at the other end, in Germany.
Accessoirement, the filling that debuts permet également à la Russie de prouver à ceux qui doutaient de sa capacité résiduelle de production que le pays a de la marge puisqu’il peut honorer ses contracts actuels tout en remplissant en parallèle a gazoduc qui n’est pasllèle a gazoduc qui n’est function.
Commissioning possible by May 2022
Without a new twist and if each actor in the Nord Stream 2 validation process takes the maximum time that has been assigned to them, it is no later than next May when Nord Stream 2 should receive authorization from the European Commission, according to Thierry Bros, professor of economics. at Sciences Po and an expert in the gas market.
However, the obstacle course is far from over. “There is still a good chance that this will derail”, warn our interlocutors who consider, however, that Nord Stream 2 continues to be the shortest and cheapest means of gas transport in Europe. But unless there is a change in the regulations, it should not alter the European offer, since the texts prepared by Brussels do not allow a supplier to exceed 40% of the market share, a level at which the giant Gazprom is already.