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Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Merkel put Russian gas pipelines political demands

The statement by Merkel that Ukraine must retain its importance as a transit country of Russian gas, has become the new Europeans attempt to reconcile the irreconcilable. In other words – to continue the policy of isolation of Ukraine from Russia and to Russia itself cause the policy to pay for. Sooner or later one will have to sacrifice – and obviously not Russian gas.

Speaking after the EU summit in Brussels, German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke about one of the topics discussed by European leaders.

“For many years the West has accused Russia that it uses the pipe as a geopolitical weapon – and now he will propose a purely political conditions economic transactions”

Along with the extension of sanctions against Russia – which is largely retained thanks to a tough stance Merkel, obedient to the dictates of the American – the issue was about the relations with Ukraine. Europe continues to work on Ukraine’s European integration, which automatically leads to the weakening and falling so the Russian-Ukrainian economic ties. The main thing that worries Europe – how to make Ukraine did not collapse on this path right now.

To pay – including for the Ukrainian debts of Russia – the EU is not going to, but wants Russia continued to facilitate the digestion of Europe the Ukrainian economy. Primarily due to the transit of gas. Ukraine earns him hundreds of millions of dollars and uses its status of transit country for blackmail both Russia and Europe.

After coming to power in Kiev of anti-Russian regime, Russia committed naturally took a course to deprive Ukraine of that opportunity. The contract for the transit expires in 2019, and by that time, Moscow wants to make the gas went to Europe bypassing Ukraine, through other pipelines. Already exists “Nord stream”, about the doubling of capacity, which recently agreed with the Europeans (the main role in the project from their side is played by the Germans). There are also two options for the southern route “South stream”, which in every way was blocked by the Americans (through their East European satellites like Bulgaria), and “Turkish”, on which negotiations suspended after was shot down by our su-24.

Although Russia itself has announced the rejection of the “South stream” because of the obstacles that were put to him by the Atlanticist – he need the Europeans more than us: the Italian and Austrian business, the Balkan countries, who need Russian gas. How to combine a commercial interest (earned on the sale of Russian gas), the need for gas supplies from Russia and the desire to continue the process of separation of Ukraine from Russia? On Friday in Brussels, Merkel tried to embrace the unembraceable:

“We discussed the future of “North” and “South” flows. I emphasized with the others that it is primarily an economic project, there are private investors. The question is, how can now be provided with the necessary legal basis. The European Commission is discussing this with our national regulators. I also wished, and many did, that a solution must be found whereby Ukraine… will not lose completely its value, in which Ukraine as a transit country will play a role. It is a political wish”.

Attempts to impose Russia the Ukrainian transit were made before. But everyone understands that it is strange to demand from the seller to put the goods to the buyer through the unreliable territory of the state, which between buyer and seller is a geopolitical conflict.

To put pressure on Russia through the refusal of the “South stream”, hoping that she would have to put gas through Ukraine, not very far-sighted. Moscow has threatened to send gas in the other direction, to the East. To replace Russian gas to Europe simply nothing – that is, the need to increase alternative to the Ukrainian route of transit. This is an extension of “Northern stream” will double its capacity and accordingly will reduce the amounts received through Ukraine.

It remains to deal with the southern ways. And it turns out that those Italians suspect the Germans in the deliberate blocking of “South stream” for the sake of their profits. On the day Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi resented the fact that Nord stream does not fall under the scope of anti-Russian sanctions – not because Rome wants to renew, on the contrary, there has long been advocated for their abolition. Just, while Germany is increasing its status as a transit country of Russian gas, the Italians denied the chance to take their share in its transit in the European market.

We have Merkel with one hand forcing all Europeans to observe for the sake of Atlantic solidarity, the sanctions regime, and another buildeth pipe with Russia. Sanctions sooner or later will cancel and the Germans will remain with the pipe, and the Italians – with dependence on its Northern neighbor, loss of profit and a sense that they were deceived.

All these intra-European showdown, seemingly not critical for Russia. It is important that in the end, the countries of Europe found the strength to defend their interests and not to participate in other people and, more importantly, unfavorable combinations. But there are also purely Ukrainian dimension of EU-Russia relations – after all, it is Anglo-Saxon and game division of Russia and Europe.

In Kiev openly oppose the extension of the “Nord stream”, calling it a “threat to its energy security”, and the US has already publicly tell the Europeans that it is impossible with one hand to help Ukraine, and another to strangle her. That is, simply, push the Europeans to make the Ukrainian transit part of the deal with Russia. They are going to buy your gas, but only if delivery of part of its territory after independence. The Europeans understand that this is a dead end – Moscow will not go to such conditions.

For many years the West has accused Russia that it uses the pipe as a geopolitical weapon – and now he will offer Russia a purely political conditions for economic transaction? It is clear that Americans are not used to force the Europeans to illogical and disadvantageous behavior, but their possibilities are not boundless.

The Europeans understand that Ukraine is of fundamental importance for the U.S. policy of containment – but continue to pay for this policy they don’t want. Especially pay their own energy security. And even in tough forcing the Americans accelerated the conclusion of the Transatlantic partnership, profitable transnational corporations and the United States.

Supporters of both partnership and struggle for “Ukraine for the Americans” in the European elite already come under increasingly criticism – and so far, everything is kept largely due to the tough Atlantic Merkel’s position. But it is necessary to stagger the positions of the Chancellor – and within German elites, it is rapidly losing its influence – as all Anglo-Saxons are building the anti-Russian combination might collapse. And much earlier than 2019. There is no Ukrainian transit.

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