Executives at Gazprom’s British trading arm have been exploring potential buyout possibilities from its Russian state-owned parent, as it teeters on the brink of insolvency, according to an exclusive report published on Sky News.
Top officials including senior managers are apparently hatching plans to acquire the division, as large customers including Mcdonald’s and Siemens have already started seeking alternative suppliers to meet their energy needs.
Gazprom Energy, the division’s UK trading firm name, supplies more than 20 percent of the gas used by British companies.
Following the Ukrainian invasion, Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller was among several Russian oligarchs who were sanctioned by western countries including the UK, US, and Australia.
The NHS in the UK has also confirmed it has stopped using energy supplied by Gazprom.
Russian gas flows to Europe dip
Russian gas deliveries to Europe through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline across the Baltic Sea dipped slightly on Wednesday, while gas continued to flow eastwards from Germany into Poland along the Yamal-Europe pipeline.
Flows to Germany through Nord Stream 1 stood at 65,361,776 kilowatt-hours per hour by 0728 GMT, slightly down from 67,955,181 kWh/h at midnight, the Nord Stream website showed.
Eastbound flows into Poland from Germany along the Yamal-Europe pipeline were at 1,717,560 kWh/h at the Mallnow border point, down from 2,362,830 kWh/h at midnight, according to data from operator Gascade.
European natural gas edges higher
European natural gas edged higher on Wednesday as traders weighed potential sanctions on Moscow and their possible impact on Russian gas flows.
Dutch front-month futures rose 4.1 percent to $113 per megawatt-hour at 10:21 a.m. in Amsterdam, while the UK equivalent gained 4 percent.
Hungary rejects sanctions on Russian energy shipments
Hungary made it clear that it does not support any sanctions on Russian energy shipments as it would endanger the nation’s energy security.
“It is not Hungary’s fault that natural gas and oil from Russia plays a big role in the energy supply of Hungary, Central Europe, and all of Europe,” said Hungary foreign minister Peter Szijjarto.
China sets green hydrogen target for 2025
China’s top economic planner announced a target on Wednesday to produce up to 200,000 tons per year of green hydrogen, a zero-carbon fuel generated from renewable energy sources, by 2025 but envisions a more widespread industry over the long term.
The country aims to produce 100,000 tons to 200,000 tons of green hydrogen a year and have about 50,000 hydrogen-fueled vehicles by 2025, the National Development and Reform Commission said in a statement.
“Development of hydrogen is an important move for energy transition and a great support for China’s carbon peak and carbon neutrality goals,” said Wang Xiang, the deputy director of the High Technology Department at the NDRC, at a press briefing.
(With inputs from Reuters)