Nord Stream: Gas deliveries to be suspended for three days due to ‘maintenance’, Gazprom says

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Russian energy giant Gazprom announced on Friday that its gas deliveries to Europe through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline will be interrupted for three days, due to “maintenance” reasons. 

“On August 31, 2022, the only Trent 60 gas compression unit will be shut down for three days until September 2, for maintenance involving Siemens technicians,” Gazprom said in a statement.

As a result, “the transport of gas through the Nord Stream pipeline will be suspended for three days,” it continued, saying that equipment maintenance was “necessary every 1,000 hours of operation.”

At the end of this period, and in the absence of technical malfunctions, gas deliveries will resume with a flow rate of 33 million cubic metres of gas per day, the statement further explained. 

The announcement comes as Moscow was recently accused of “energy blackmail” by the West, and the move risks reviving fears of energy shortages across Europe.

Russia has repeatedly cut gas supplies to Europe, which is heavily dependent on Russian energy, after Western countries imposed sanctions on Moscow over its Ukraine offensive. 

Some 40 per cent of the EU’s gas imports were from Russia until last year. 

In recent weeks, Russia has justified these cuts by the failure to return a Siemens turbine repaired in Canada, which Moscow claims is essential for the proper functioning of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline.

European countries accuse Moscow of delaying the return of this turbine in order to be able to claim a reduction in its deliveries and thus put pressure on them.

A 10-day maintenance shutdown in July had previously raised concerns among European countries, which have been trying for months to diversify their supplies.