Brussels, Jul 26 (EFE).- Russian energy giant Gazprom’s move to further reduce natural gas supplies through Nord Stream 1 pipeline is “politically motivated” and had no technical reasons behind it, the European Commission said Tuesday.
“We know that there is no technical reason to do so,” EU energy commissioner Kadri Simson said upon her arrival at a meeting of energy ministers in Brussels.
“This is a politically motivated step, and we have to be ready for that. And exactly for that reason, the preemptive reduction of our gas demand is a wise strategy,” she added.
Energy ministers of the EU member states are meeting in Brussels to pen an emergency plan to reduce the bloc’s gas consumption in light of a potential total cutoff of Russian gas supplies.
The meeting comes a day after Gazprom announced it would drop gas deliveries through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to 33 million cubic meters per day starting July 27.
“Yesterday’s announcement by Gazprom underlines once again that we have to be ready the possible supply cuts from Russia at any moment and to be ready for that we have to act right now, we have to take care of our preparedness, we have to tackle this crisis right now,” Simson said.
“By doing so we will reduce our demand preemptively. That allows us to continue the filling of our underground gas storage, which right now is at 66%,” she continued.
Jozef Sikela, the Czech industry and trade minister whose country holds the rotating presidency of the European Council, said that Russia’s president Vladimir Putin would continue gas “blackmailing.”
“The winter is coming and we don’t know how cold it will be.
“But what we know for sure is that Putin will continue to play his dirty games in misusing and blackmailing by gas supplies.
“And this is something that we have to prepare our households and economies for and we have to protect them.”EFE