PGNiG says Gazprom to halt gas supplies to Poland

Poland’s dominant gas firm and LNG importer, PGNiG, said Russia’s Gazprom would stop gas supplies via the Yamal pipeline to Poland.

PGNiG said in a statement on Tuesday it received a letter from Gazprom announcing the complete suspension of supplies under the Yamal contract at the beginning of the contract day on April 27.

The company did not provide the reason for the halt of supplies but the move was probably related to Poland’s refusal to pay for Russian gas supplies in rubles.

In March, Russia said that foreign buyers must pay for Russian gas in rubles instead of euros or dollars.

The long-term contract between PGNiG and Gazprom provides for the supply of about 10 bcm of gas annually.

However, the Yamal contract expires in 2022 and PGNiG previously said it would not renew the contract from 2023.

LNG imports rising

According to PGNiG, the firm is in constant contact with Gaz-System and said that “all deliveries to customers are carried out in accordance with their needs.”

The firm said that undergound gas storages in Poland are currently about 80 percent full, significantly higher than in the corresponding period in previous years.

Also, PGNiG said it can source gas from various directions, including through gas connections on the western and southern borders and the LNG terminal in Swinoujscie.

PGNiG recently said that LNG imports via the country’s regasification facility in Swinoujscie rose almost 34 percent in the first quarter.

LNG imports reached 1.07 billion cubic meters in the January-March period. This compares to 0.80 bcm in the same period last year.

On the other side, the firm said pipeline gas imports from Russia dropped to 2.15 bcm compared with 2.26 bcm in the first quarter of last year.

PGNiG is in charge of all the supplies coming to the Swinoujscie import terminal operated by Gaz-System. The firm also showed interest in Gaz-System’s planned FSRU-based LNG terminal in Gdansk Bay.

Supplies to Bulgaria cut as well

Gazprom said in a statement issued on Wednesday that it had not received payments in rubles from Bulgaria’s Bulgargaz and PGNiG for the gas supplied in April.

In this connection, Gazprom Export has notified Bulgargaz and PGNiG of the suspension of gas supplies from April 27 until the two companies complete the payments in rubles, the Russian firm said.

Both Bulgaria and Poland are transit states for Russian gas supplies to other countries in Europe.

“In case of unauthorized offtake of Russian gas from the volumes intended for transit into third countries, the transited supplies will be reduced by the volume that was offtaken,” Gazprom said.

(Article updated on April 27, 2022, to include a statement by Gazprom.)

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