Putin Holding Back Russia’s Gas Exports To Europe

RUSSIA (October 7, 2021)–Russian president Vladimir Putin is holding back around 15 percent of Russia’s gas exports to Europe which could solve the UK’s energy crisis, the head of the International Energy Agency (IEA) has said.

Fatih Birol, the executive director of the agency, urged Russia to prove it is a ‘reliable supplier’ by helping to ease the shortages that have sent prices skyrocketing and threatened the post-pandemic economic recovery of many countries, including Britain’s.

‘If Russia does what it indicated yesterday and increases the volumes to Europe, this would have a calming effect on the market,’ Birol told the Financial Times. ‘I don’t say they will do it but if they wish so, they have the capacity to do it.’

Birol said, based on the agency’s analysis, that Russia could raise its exports by roughly 15 percent of its peak supply to the continent during winter. 

While a small percentage of the UK’s gas is imported directly from Russia (around 5 percent), 38 percent of Europe’s gas comes from the country, leading to a known-on effect for Britain when the Kremlin restricts supply.

Birol’s comments come amid widespread fury at Russia’s strongman leader, who was today accused of turning energy ‘into a weapon’ and ‘bullying’ Europe by hinting he will pump out more gas if Brussels approves Russia’s controversial new pipeline bypassing Ukraine.

Britain’s looming energy crisis got worse for millions who now face paying between £500 and £800-a-year more for their energy in 2022.  

Wholesale gas prices surged to a record 400p yesterday – a 37% increase in 24 hours and 600% up on January – but dropped to around 274p today after the Russian President’s intervention.

A senior Government source told MailOnline today that ministers believe Russia is choking off gas supply to force EU states to approve its new Nord Stream 2 pipeline under the Baltic Sea, adding that when Russia restricts supply, global wholesale gas prices goes up. 

Experts now believe that the UK’s energy price cap, brought in to protect the poorest households, will now rise by a third to about £1,660 from April 1 – up from £1,277 today. The cheapest fixed deal on the market is now £1,800-a-year – approaching £1,000 more than 12 months ago.

Source: Daily Mail UK

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