An honest look at the prospects for Russian gas exports


New Year has come, the holidays are nearing completion. One can already soberly assess what Russia was able to achieve over the past five-year post-Maidan period. the economy, and the challenges that our country will face in 2020. Since Gazprom and hydrocarbons are “our everything”, we’ll talk as honestly as possible about the results of the “national treasure”.


The main direction of the state corporation is the export of natural gas through pipelines. For Gazprom, Europe is traditionally the main foreign market, while Ukraine is the main transit intermediary. After the events of 2014, the Kremlin tried to diversify its supplies at the expense of China, as well as “circumvent” the Independent, both in the literal and figurative sense of the word. What came of this?

"The Power of Siberia"


This gas pipeline can be considered a symbol of the "turn to the East." Negotiations on its construction and terms of supply of “blue fuel” took a very long time, but after the annexation of Crimea and the introduction of the first Western sanctions, the Kremlin needed a visible geopolitical victory to demonstrate the impossibility of international isolation of Russia. After a personal visit to Beijing by President Vladimir Putin, an agreement on the Power of Siberia was signed.

During the construction process, the project went up significantly, but by the end of 2019, gas had already begun to flow to China. According to the contract, Russia is now obliged to supply “blue fuel” to China in the amount of 30 billion cubic meters per year for 38 years. This “breakthrough to the East” is evaluated differently. Skeptics believe that the gas pipeline will not pay off for a very long time, and it brought undoubted benefit only to its contractors. Pessimism is added by the fact that Beijing suddenly embarked on a liberalization of the domestic gas price market, which could work against the Power of Siberia.

Optimists point to the fact that the pipeline can be considered an “anchor project” that will allow Gazprom to cling to the world's largest manufacturing economy, China. Who will ultimately be right, time will tell.

"Turkish Stream"


This pipeline is an impromptu of President Putin. After Bulgaria closed the construction of the South Stream, Gazprom began to lay a pipe in the direction of Turkey. The alternative gas pipeline has halved in terms of pumped gas volumes from the original “Bulgarian” project. The first Russian gas has already begun to flow to Turkey.

Unfortunately, it was not possible to do completely without the not entirely reliable Sofia. Instead of Greece, Gazprom repeatedly relied on Bulgaria and again made a mistake. The construction of a pipeline link between Turkey and Serbia through Bulgarian territory is constantly slowing down, which President Putin directly blamed on Sofia. Now the deadlines for launching the transit part by May 31 are called, but who knows what will happen if the US imposes sanctions against the Turkish Stream?

Ankara is gradually reducing the consumption of Russian gas, intending to diversify the sources of its production as much as possible. At the same time, in addition to Syria, the Turks can now face the Russians already in Libya, which is unlikely to contribute to fruitful cooperation between our countries.

Nord Stream 2


This is our main pain. A big bet was made on the bypass pipeline around Ukraine. Theoretically, Nord Stream-2 plus Turkish Stream could compensate for a significant portion of the export load through the Ukrainian gas transportation system. But the United States, claiming its share of the European gas market, put this project on the shoulder blades with several blows.

At first, Denmark, under sheer pressure from Washington, has been dragging the issue of building permits for years. Then, European bureaucrats adopted amendments to the Third Energy Package, extending their effect to offshore pipelines. Because of this, Nord Stream-2, designed for 55 billion cubic meters of gas per year, suddenly became half empty. Chancellor Merkel was able to knock out exceptions for the gas pipeline, but President Trump inflicted ku de gras by imposing direct sanctions on the Russian-German project.

The remaining 160 kilometers of the pipe - two weeks of work - now there is simply no one to finish building. The Swiss contractor abandoned construction, there are no alternatives; the only pipe-laying vessel at Gazprom is under repair in the Far East. If earlier the launch of Nord Stream-2 was expected to be operational by the summer of 2020, now it is at best the end of 2020, provided that the United States and Denmark do not come up with anything else. And then the gas pipeline will turn into a real unfinished building. By that time, the window of opportunity for exclusion from the Third Energy Package, knocked out by Angela Merkel, will expire. For Madame Chancellor, who has staked on the "green revolution", this will be a serious political blow.

Against this gloomy background, the signing of the five-year transit agreement with Ukraine can hardly be called anything other than the recognition by Gazprom of a defeat in an attempt to refuse the services of Kiev. Perhaps, while the country has money in the NWF and relative stability, is it worth it to do something else, besides exporting hydrocarbons, with which it is already somehow not very good?
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  1. Mihail55 Offline Mihail55
    Mihail55 (Michael) 6 January 2020 14: 19
    +2
    No words ... You read articles on the VO - in the military-industrial complex problems: short deliveries, understaffing, trials, etc. With the sale of mineral resources - again problems !!! One vessel for pipe laying - and then under repair !!! And this is success ??? According to cardinal things, we do not have competent decisions, and for many years our industry and the science associated with each industry are purposefully destroyed! Are we all kept for fools ??? The work of the sea ... and there is no hands-on application for professionals! Paradox???
    1. cmonman Offline cmonman
      cmonman (Garik Mokin) 7 January 2020 03: 23
      0
      Are we all kept for fools ???

      And already 20 years !!! A whole generation !!!
  2. Altona Offline Altona
    Altona (Eugene) 6 January 2020 14: 51
    +1
    The article is sensibly written. In fact, Miller has led Gazprom to a dead end and is now compensating for losses at the expense of the people. The article was politically correct to blur this conclusion.
  3. Mihail55 Offline Mihail55
    Mihail55 (Michael) 6 January 2020 14: 58
    +1
    Quote: Altona
    In fact, Miller led Gazprom to a dead end.

    Good afternoon, Eugene. Is it really this gentleman? This is a puppet ... he is only a figure in a major game. We are extras, unfortunately.
  4. commbatant Offline commbatant
    commbatant (Sergei) 6 January 2020 15: 20
    -1
    It’s a pity, you can’t put the minus articles ... the opuses of yet another all-crawler ...
    1. Oyo Sarkazmi Offline Oyo Sarkazmi
      Oyo Sarkazmi (Oyo Sarkazmi) 6 January 2020 19: 45
      +1
      Quote: commbatant
      It’s a pity, you can’t put the minus articles ... the opuses of yet another all-crawler ...

      Not an all-crawler, but a Kiev dreamer. Trump will come with his LNG in 1,8% of the market, and kirdyk to Gazprom with its 45 percent.
  5. Bulanov Offline Bulanov
    Bulanov (Vladimir) 6 January 2020 17: 38
    -1
    Or maybe it's time to work with the people of Ukraine more competently? Under Trotsky and Stalin they knew how, and there was patriotism.
    1. isofat Offline isofat
      isofat (isofat) 6 January 2020 17: 43
      -1
      Bulanov, in Ukraine people have not yet won!
    2. commbatant Offline commbatant
      commbatant (Sergei) 6 January 2020 19: 48
      0
      Quote: Bulanov
      Or maybe it's time to work with the people of Ukraine more competently? Under Trotsky and Stalin they knew how, and there was patriotism.

      What do you mean

      more competent to work?

      Under Stalin, Novorossia was given dill, what else do you need, half of Russia, or something, they should have been given ...?
  6. Marzhecki Offline Marzhecki
    Marzhecki (Sergei) 6 January 2020 18: 27
    -3
    Quote: commbatant
    It’s a pity, you can’t put the minus articles ... the opuses of yet another all-crawler ...

    But you can. wink
    1. isofat Offline isofat
      isofat (isofat) 6 January 2020 18: 32
      0
      Quote: Marzhetsky
      An honest look at the prospects for Russian gas exports.

      Honesty is not proven.
  7. Oyo Sarkazmi Offline Oyo Sarkazmi
    Oyo Sarkazmi (Oyo Sarkazmi) 6 January 2020 19: 42
    +1
    After signing the contract with Naftogaz, Gazprom actually stopped OPAL - on the mountain many children of German officials. The pumped volume is 18% of the capacity of 35 billion cubic meters. Less, apparently, is impossible.
    Given the stocks in storage facilities up to 95% - in summer, exports of SP-1 will stop altogether.
  8. cmonman Offline cmonman
    cmonman (Garik Mokin) 7 January 2020 04: 24
    0
    I want to add my 1rub.20 (at old prices) or 7rub.40 (at new).
    About the SP-2 and its stop. After 2014, Europe agreed to give Ukraine financial assistance. At least somehow compensate Ukraine for the loss of $$$ from gas transit through its territory. And Trump got angry at the duplicity of Germany and Europe, who, on the one hand, “want to help” Ukraine, and on the other hand, know that having built an SP-2, Russia will not want to pass gas through Ukraine either.
    Here is a partial transcript of politicians discussing sanctions a couple of days before they are signed by Trump.
    Dec 19,2019

    https://www.npr.org/2019/12/19/789704849/germany-reacts-to-u-s-sanctions-on-gas-pipeline

    “DAVID GREEN, LEADING:
    For other news now - Congress has voted to impose sanctions on companies involved in the construction of the so-called Nord Stream 2. This is a pipeline through which Russian natural gas flows to Germany. President Trump said he will sign the bill immediately as soon as he reaches his desk. According to Rob Schmitz of NPR, Germany reacted sharply to these sanctions.
    “ROB SCHMITZ, BYLINE: German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas condemned US sanctions on the pipeline, saying in an e-mail statement that European energy policy is being addressed in Europe and not in the United States. The Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which is scheduled to be completed in 2020, will be able to pass almost half of Germany's natural gas imports per year through the 750-mile pipeline under the Baltic Sea.
    “MATIAS LANG: If you need gas, it must come from somewhere else.
    Schmitz: Mathias Lang is an energy law partner at Bird & Bird in Düsseldorf. The first Nord Stream pipeline runs to Germany via Ukraine, and Ukraine receives billions of transit revenues from this. The US fears that after the completion of Nord Stream 2, which bypasses Ukraine, Kiev may be vulnerable to Russian blackmail at a time when Russia and Ukraine are at war. The US also fears that the Nord Stream 2 pipeline will make Germany too dependent on Russia. Lange says the concern sounds unfounded.

    In addition, in the party itself, Merkel is very unhappy with her consent to the construction of SP-2. Even her inner circle. And in other parties there are many opponents of SP-2. I don’t know for what purpose Merkel is going to Moscow, but one of the options to prepare Putin for the fact that with her departure defending SP-2 in Germany will be very difficult or impossible.
    From the article:

    Then, European bureaucrats adopted amendments to the Third Energy Package, extending their effect to offshore pipelines. Because of this, Nord Stream-2, designed for 55 billion cubic meters of gas per year, suddenly became half empty.

    This is not bureaucracy, this is an awesome and convenient solution to reduce the cost of gas to the consumer. In our state (and in the country) it was introduced 15 years ago. On our street, gas pipes and electric cables, as well as gas and electric belong to one company. A law was passed prohibiting the energy company from owning both delivery vehicles and gas / electricity. There must be one thing. The company chose delivery, i.e. pipes / cables. And right away there were a dozen companies that wanted to rent carriers and offer us, users, gas / electricity at lower prices than the monopolist. And prices for us fell somewhere by 15% -20%. Perfectly!!!
    The third amendment obliges Gazprom to lease 1/2 the volume of the pipe to lease / rent. And gas from this supplier may be cheaper than Gazprom gas. And the gas price for Europe will fall. Gazprom will not find a customer - 1/2 pipe is empty / full. This is the "sinister grin of capitalism."
  9. Marzhecki Offline Marzhecki
    Marzhecki (Sergei) 7 January 2020 07: 48
    0
    Quote: cmonman
    This is not bureaucracy, this is an awesome and convenient solution to reduce the cost of gas to the consumer. In our state (and in the country) it was introduced 15 years ago.

    in your state? smile
    1. cmonman Offline cmonman
      cmonman (Garik Mokin) 7 January 2020 16: 02
      -2
      Sergey, I don’t hide where I live.
    2. cmonman Offline cmonman
      cmonman (Garik Mokin) 7 January 2020 21: 29
      -2
      Yeah, Sergey, you set Minus to me when you found out about my place of residence, and I put Plus for your knowledge of geography.
      And further. Your article is entitled “An honest look at ....”
      The “glance” may be honest, but incomplete. You gave information only from Gazprom, but from Europe and the USA - nothing (see my comment below).
      If you listen to my advice - read Lenin’s grandfather, and grandfather Lenin’s advice, which said: “Learn English is a source of knowledge.” And after a pause he added: “And money, too”, then, having embodied our advice, your articles will be read like hot cakes and people will reach for you ...!
  10. Marzhecki Offline Marzhecki
    Marzhecki (Sergei) 7 January 2020 07: 50
    +2
    Quote: Oyo Sarkazmi
    Quote: commbatant
    It’s a pity, you can’t put the minus articles ... the opuses of yet another all-crawler ...

    Not an all-crawler, but a Kiev dreamer. Trump will come with his LNG in 1,8% of the market, and kirdyk to Gazprom with its 45 percent.

    Actually, I am a citizen of Russia, I have been living in the Urals all my life. Don't la la lol
    1. isofat Offline isofat
      isofat (isofat) 7 January 2020 16: 20
      0
      Marzhecki, soon you will be invited to the States as a valuable analyst ...
  11. Yuri Mikhailovsky (Yuri Mikhailovsky) 7 January 2020 20: 34
    +2
    Is the look really honest?
  12. Marzhecki Offline Marzhecki
    Marzhecki (Sergei) 11 January 2020 08: 41
    0
    Quote: commbatant
    Under Stalin, Novorossia was given dill, what else do you need, half of Russia, or something, they should have been given ...?

    Under Putin, it could be returned, but not returned.
  13. Marzhecki Offline Marzhecki
    Marzhecki (Sergei) 11 January 2020 08: 43
    +2
    Quote: isofat
    Marzhecki, soon you will be invited to the States as a valuable analyst ...

    My predictions often come true, as I try to assess the situation honestly. Some may not like this, your right.
    P.S. I won’t go to the States. smile
    1. cmonman Offline cmonman
      cmonman (Garik Mokin) 12 January 2020 23: 55
      -2
      "... I will not go to the States." Phew, it's easy !!! And then I put things in order at home, that the handle of the front door is taken first, mother-in-law, then wife, then children. So cancel?
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