Russian President Putin is defending his pipeline project in Sochi
Dmitry Feoktistov / imago images / ITAR-TASS
According to President Vladimir Putin, Russia is ready to increase the supply of natural gas to Europe after Germany has certified the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
It could start the next day, he said on Thursday at a discussion forum in the city of Sochi on the Black Sea.
The filling of the second line with gas will be completed in mid to late December.
The first tube has already been filled with gas.
The energy policy of the European Union is responsible for the gas crisis and the high prices, Putin said on Thursday.
The European gas market is now missing 70 billion cubic meters of natural gas, even though Russia recently increased its exports.
The Federal Network Agency has until the beginning of January to decide on an operating permit for the pipes, which are supposed to deliver up to 55 billion cubic meters of natural gas from Russia to Germany annually.
This is not a project of the Russian energy giant Gazprom, five European companies are involved, Putin said.
In view of the gas crisis in Europe, he had recently advertised several times for Nord Stream 2 to be launched quickly.
Gas prices have reached record levels in Europe.
Gazprom's critics suspect that the company is not reacting to the increased European demand in order to force the rapid commissioning of Pipeline 2.
The Russian side had denied such allegations.
Ernst and Ramsauer: Baerbock should make himself knowledgeable
Meanwhile, the chairmen of the Bundestag committees for economy and energy and for economic cooperation and development, Klaus Ernst (left) and Peter Ramsauer (CSU), criticized the Greens chairwoman Annalena Baerbock for comments on the natural gas pipeline.
In a joint statement, there is no evidence of their "allegation that Russia is abusing the supply of natural gas to blackmail Europe and is responsible for the rise in energy prices".
A "possible future foreign minister" can be expected to be knowledgeable.
In an interview with the newspapers of the Funke Mediengruppe Russia, Baerbock accused Russia of playing a “poker game” and “really down” gas deliveries with a view to the high energy prices.
"We must not allow ourselves to be blackmailed," said the Greens chairwoman and pleaded for the Baltic Sea natural gas pipeline Nord Stream 2 not to be granted an operating permit for the time being.
sol / dpa / Reuters