5 Aug 2022 8:00 p.m
Canadian Minister of Natural Resources Jonathan Wilkinson has defended his country’s decision to send back the sanctioned turbine for Nord Stream 1. Wilkinson stressed that the government was not convinced by Ukraine’s arguments about an alternative.
Gas transit to Europe via Ukraine cannot be an alternative to Nord Stream. Canadian Minister of Natural Resources Jonathan Wilkinson said so. In his speech to Parliament, Wilkinson defended the decision to return the Russian turbine for Nord Stream 1.
Wilkinson thus contradicted the arguments of Ukraine, which opposed it and assured that there were alternative supply options. According to the minister, Canada has not relied on transit through Ukraine to replace the Nord Stream pipeline due to insufficient capacity.
The politician also specified that he examined Ukraine’s proposal with technical experts from the International Energy Agency and discussed it with representatives of the EU and Germany. They all came to the conclusion that deliveries through Ukraine would be significantly lower than Nord Stream’s deliveries at full capacity, Wilkinson said. Literally it said:
“The bottom line is that the flows that could flow through the pipelines running from Russia via Ukraine to Germany would be significantly lower than those of Nord Stream.”
In addition, the minister pointed to the risks associated with the Russian military operation and the possibility that Russia could reduce pumping capacity through Ukrainian territory. For her part, Ukraine’s Ambassador to Canada Yulia Kovaliv dismissed Wilkinson’s arguments in a speech, stressing that more gas is currently being pumped through the country than through Nord Stream:
“It is not true that Ukraine cannot replace gas supplies to Germany.”
Earlier this week, Chancellor Olaf Scholz spoke up for Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. According to Scholz, the criticism of Justin Trudeau is “unfounded”. Allegedly, Russia is using the turbine as an excuse to deliver less gas. Soon that could no longer be possible, the Chancellor continued:
“With the delivery of the turbine, we exposed Putin’s bluff. He can no longer use this pretext and no longer bring up technical reasons for the lack of gas deliveries.”
In particular, the Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelenskij had shown dissatisfaction with the actions of the Canadian Prime Minister. In his opinion, he made a “dangerous concession”. A statement from the Foreign and Energy Departments in Kyiv said they were “deeply disappointed” by the Canadian government’s decision to grant an exemption from sanctions imposed on Russia in this case.
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