Energy, Tagliapietra (Bruegel): “Turkey as a gas hub, don’t worry, there is no market”

“It’s just Putin’s umpteenth attempt to sow discord and divide us”

Is Turkey a gas hub? “It is a non-issue, there is no market and it is just another one of Vladimir Putin’s attempts to sow discord” in the West. Simone Tagliapietra, senior fellow of the Brussels think tank Bruegel and professor of Energy, climate and environmental policies at the Catholic University of Milan, comments on the Russian president’s proposal to make Turkey a gas hub, relaunched in yesterday’s meeting in Astana with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Which today confirmed the goal of creating an “international distribution center” for gas in the Eastern Thrace region, on the shores of the Black Sea.

“I think this is the umpteenth game of Putin’s gas – Tagliapietra tells Adnkronos – Russian supplies to Europe have now been reduced by 80% and therefore Moscow has lost what was the strongest geostrategic weapon against Europe, which in the meantime has diversified and withstood an unprecedented shock in a way that could not be expected “.

And therefore, failing his most powerful weapon, Putin “tries to play other very imaginative cards” but that make no sense: “To say to use Turkey as a gas hub is yet another attempt to sow discord, to fragment the NATO and Europe front “, says the expert.

Which explains how the Russian president is on the other hand trying to “lure Turkey with the prospect of becoming an energy hub”, a prospect always pursued by Erdogan, but “in a way that is not technically feasible, because the pipes that there are (Turkisk and Blue Stream, ed.) they are only used by the Turks and even if further volumes of Russian gas were to arrive, how would they arrive in Europe? “. “There are no interconnectors – underlines Tagliapietra – There is the Tap, the gas pipeline that arrives in Puglia, but carries the Azerbaijani gas”. As well as the new Igb, which connects Bulgaria and Greece.

“There are no infrastructures, there is no market, no country is thinking of buying back Russian gas – insists Bruegel’s expert – The question does not even arise, except to create confusion and to try to divide even more the western front “.

Finally, Tagliapietra, returning to the issue of gas storage in Europe, confirms the forecasts on the difficulties for next winter: “For this year we have filled part of the stocks with some Russian gas that we will not have next year – glosses – Then there is the question of China, which, due to the zero Covid policy and the slowdown in the economy, needed a lower than usual quantity of LNG. But if demand were to increase with the recovery of the economy, Europe it would have a problem of strong competition with China “to grab LNG.