Putin claims that Russia is prepared to increase gas exports as EU prices rise.

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Putin claims that Russia is prepared to increase gas exports as EU prices rise.

After Europe accused Russia of restricting natural gas flows and driving prices to new highs, President Vladimir Putin stated on Wednesday that Russia was ready to increase natural gas supplies abroad.

Putin stated at a Moscow energy summit that Russia was ready to meet fresh requests for bigger amounts from buyers.

“If they want us to provide even more, we will,” Putin said, adding that Russia is expanding supply “to the extent that our partners ask.”

Due to a frigid conclusion to last winter, Europe is facing a gas crisis leading up to the coldest season of the year, with a spike in prices and diminishing inventories.

Demand is rising as countries recover from pandemic lockdowns, and renewable energy sources such as wind are experiencing shortfalls.

Some in Europe are blaming Russia for the rise in gas prices, claiming that Moscow is deliberately limiting supplies in order to compel Europe into signing more long-term contracts and approving the contentious Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

However, Putin blamed “structural faults” in the European energy market on Wednesday and dismissed criticism, stating that “some try to shift their failures onto others.”

Russian officials have stated several times in recent weeks that suppliers are meeting their contractual obligations to European buyers.

Moscow is not increasing supplies accessible on the EU-favored short-term spot markets, claiming that it is more competitive.

Nikolai Shulginov, Russia’s energy minister, warned earlier Wednesday that greater supply to Europe would necessitate new contracts.

“If requests are made, they will only be made through the introduction of new contractual duties,” he said, describing Russia as a “reliable supplier.”

Putin said at the summit on Wednesday that finding a “long-term” mechanism to stabilize the market, which he described as “complex,” was “extremely vital.”

Russia, which supplies more than a third of Europe’s gas, has stated that a quick start of its Nord Stream 2 project will assist to mitigate price increases.

The Baltic Sea pipeline, which has been criticized as a geopolitical weapon by certain Western countries, is expected to treble natural gas supplies from Russia to Germany.

However, detractors claim that the pipeline, which was recently completed, will deprive Ukraine, a crucial EU ally, of transit revenues.

Volodymyr Zelensky, the president of Ukraine, called on Brussels to adopt a “shared long-term vision of Europe’s energy security” this week.

In addition, Moscow has not reserved additional gas transit capacity via Ukraine to Europe for the month of October, causing anxiety.

Putin stated on Wednesday that if the U.S. The Washington Newsday Brief News is a daily newspaper published in Washington, D.C.

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