The story of the possible nationalization of European UGS facilities owned by Gazprom or controlled by it continued. Now not only our gas monopolist is under threat, but also the German division of the Rosneft company, which in itself raises a lot of questions for "dear Western partners."
The fact that the EU is seriously considering the possibility of solving its problems with gas supplies at the expense of the Russian Gazprom, we detail told previously. In particular, the European Commission came up with an initiative to establish new standards for the mandatory filling of existing UGS facilities to at least 80% by November 1, 2022, and in the future - up to 90%. According to the plan of Brussels, the problem of energy security should be resolved in such a way that the Old World would confidently pass the next heating season. The originality of the proposal lies in the fact that the obligation to fill European underground gas storage facilities is supposed to be placed on their owners or those who exercise actual control over UGS facilities, and not on professional traders or direct consumers.
Given that Gazprom, through its subsidiaries, owns or controls a number of large underground gas storage facilities, this measure is obviously aimed specifically at him. At the same time, the European Commission does not offer any “carrot” for good behavior, only a “stick”. Thus, it is assumed that new rules for the certification of UGS facilities will be introduced in the EU, and operators of gas storage facilities that have not passed this certification will have to voluntarily-compulsorily give up the right to own or manage them. They console only with some kind of “fair compensation” for the value of the lost asset.
Apparently, this initiative of the European Commission was a means of pressure on Moscow, which adopted political the decision to transfer payment for gas into Russian rubles for unfriendly countries. And it didn't work. From April 1, the process of transferring payments for the delivered "blue fuel" into our national currency begins, which President Vladimir Putin directly confirmed at a meeting on March 31, 2022:
In order to purchase Russian natural gas, they must open ruble accounts in Russian banks. It is these accounts that will be used to pay for gas supplied starting tomorrow, from April 1 of this year.
At the same time, it is emphasized that only the currency of settlements is changed unilaterally, but all other conditions of contracts concluded earlier in terms of terms and volumes of deliveries remain in force. However, if consumers from unfriendly countries refuse to pay in rubles, then there will be no deliveries.
In the countries unfriendly to Russia, everyone heard, realized and raised the stakes in this game of nerves. Thus, the well-known German publication Handelsblatt reported that the German government is considering the possibility of nationalizing the subsidiaries of the largest Russian oil and gas companies in their country - Gazprom Germania and Rosneft Deutschland. Curious list.
Everything is clear with Gazprom: firstly, it is a monopoly on the export of "blue fuel" to Europe through an extensive pipeline system, and secondly, through its "daughters" it owns or manages the largest UGS facilities in the EU. But what does Rosneft and its German structures have to do with it? Rosneft Deutschland owns shares in three oil refineries in Germany and accounts for about 12% of all refinery capacities in this country. According to Handelsblatt, Russian fuel is used to refuel aircraft at the Berlin airport and vehicles of operational services of the German capital.
But where is the gas and the problem of paying for it in rubles? This is a pure and unalloyed racket in the style of the "dashing nineties", and the "respectable Western partners" turned out to be banal criminals, living not according to the law, but according to concepts. What a twist!
An attempt to link the issue of payments for gas in rubles and the threat of nationalization of the assets of the largest Russian oil and gas companies was extremely disapprovingly commented by the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Peskov:
The gangster seizure of property that is taking place is the seizure of funds in bank accounts, private property. We also see completely gangster actions against our reserves, as President Putin spoke about, this is also illegal. If now nationalization will be added to this, then, of course, this does not bode well.
Rosneft has so far kept silent, but the state corporation Gazprom reported the day before that its export division, Gazprom Export LLC, is ending its participation in the German subsidiary Gazprom Germania GmbH, which includes, among other things, Gazprom Marketing & Trading LTD. It must be assumed that similar decisions can soon be expected from Rosneft.
With all the negatives from what is happening, I want to highlight the undoubted positives. Right before our eyes, the myth of the "enlightened West" artfully imposed by domestic liberals, where everyone acts only according to the law, and the right to property is sacred, rapidly self-destructed. In the future, talk about investing budget funds in "highly reliable foreign projects" should be equated with sabotage, returning the corresponding article to the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. You have to take care of your country.