martes, 2 de diciembre de 2014


Continúan las reacciones a la decision rusa de suspender el proyecto gasífero South Stream (véase nuestro post de ayer). Acá van algunas de ellas:

Del sitio web griego The Unbalanced Evolution of Homo Sapiens (

Título: Fresh smart moves by Putin in the geopolitical field - What do they mean

Texto: The new agreement between Russia and Turkey for the construction of a 63 bcm gas pipeline during Putin's visit in Ankara yesterday, is probably another win of Putin in the geopolitical field.

From RT:

“Gazprom CEO Aleksey Miller said the energy giant will build a massive gas pipeline that will travel from Russia, transit through Turkey, and stop at the Greek border – giving Russia access to the Southern European market. The pipeline will have an annual capacity of 63 billion cubic meters. A total of 14 bcm will be delivered to Turkey, which is Gazprom’s second biggest customer in the region after Germany. Russia’s energy minister Aleksandr Novak said that the new project will include a specially-constructed hub on the Turkish-Greek border for customers in southern Europe.”

“While the pipeline will be registered as a Russian company, Miller said that Gazprom will 'consider offers from Turkish partners if they express an interest in buying into the project.' [...] Moscow will also reduce the gas price for Turkish customers by 6 percent from January 1, 2015, Putin said. Later, Novak said the discount could reach 15 percent, subject to negotiations.”

“Novak later confirmed that Vladimir Putin personally ordered for the South Stream project to be mothballed, and its existing facilities to be repurposed for the new Turkish pipeline. The much-delayed South Stream was supposed to connect underwater Black Sea pipelines with a network in Eastern Europe, with Bulgaria as the entry point.”

The first strong signal from Russia to the EU, is that it has many alternative ways to bypass sanctions and barriers against other projects like the South Stream pipeline. Putin clearly expressed his dissatisfaction about the barriers imposed by the EU concerning the deployment of South Stream (, and the deal with Turkey showed that he is determined to build alternatives.

So far, the EU forced Greece and Bulgaria to play the game according to the interests of the Western big companies: “Also, the failure of selling the Greek gas company (DEPA) to Russians, was not accidental, since in this case, Gasprom would have become the basic stakeholder of the Greek-Bulgarian pipeline IGB, in which the Greek company participates. And this means that the supply of Bulgaria and Romania with gas from Azerbaijan would be impossible. The 180 degree turn of European Commission is characteristic, since, while appeared at the start supporting fully the Nabucco pipeline, subsequently withdrew its support, since Nabucco was no longer competitive against Russian interests pipeline South Stream.” (

However, the details of the new agreement show that Russia probably wants to put Greece back in the game, seeing that there are dramatic changes in the political landscape not only in Greece, but also in Europe that could change dramatically the geopolitical status. (

At the same time, Russia sees an opportunity to play a key role, especially in the eastern Mediterranean, therefore seeking agreements which increase the stability in the region and minimise the possibility of various conflicts. There was a tension lately between Greece and Turkey, after Turkey sent a ship to the waters off the coast of Cyprus for oil and gas exploration.

The third and probably most significant gain by Putin, is that shields Russia more effectively from the unpredicted and dangerous expansion of the jihadists of Islamic State to the north and especially to Chechnya which would bring trouble to the door of Russia. Through such deals, Turkey will be forced to defend its soil to protect huge investments that could contribute significantly to the economy, while will consider to support or even tolerate the jihadists as they could grab major energy pipelines.

Del sitio web del Peregrino (

Título: Who won? Who lost? You tell me!

Texto: I won't make this one long or analytical.  I am sure that somebody will do that within the next 24 hours.  But I will say this: the Ukrainians blackmailed Russia over gas, and that created North Stream and South Stream.  The Bulgarians decided to cave in to the Eurobureaucrats and that created today's deal with Turkey.  For 63bcm.  Which happens to be the maximal output of South Stream.  But that is all short term.  The long term is this: Russia is creating a unified gas distribution network which will be able to send gas from anywhere in Russia to any part of the Russia border. 

[Sidebar: The real market for Russian gas will not be a dying EU economy, but the growing and energy hungry mega-market of China.  Russia is also selling China it's top-of-the-line S-400 missiles which is a nightmare come true for the US and Taiwan.  And all of this involves huge sums of money, immense projects and a deep strategic alliance for decades into the future.]

As for Turkey, this "faithful" NATO member and US ally, it was more than happy to backstab the EU which had denied it membership for decades.  Not only did Turkey sign a deal with Gazprom, it also agreed to have Russia essentially built its entire nuclear industry.  Russia and Turkey also agreed to boost trade and tourism. Politics is politics, but business is business.  Nothing personal here, but Uncle Sam can go and... well, you know what :-)

As for the clueless Europeans, they appear to be literally speechless.  Especially the clueless Bulgarian and Serbian politicians who look like idiots and will have to do a lot of explaining to their own people.

The German economy is hurting because of the interruption of trade with Russia and Merkel is in very hot water.  Just like Hollande who has to explain why France is now looking at huge losses over the Mistral debacle.

The way I see it, not only did Russia not lose anything, Russia achieved two crucial things: she now firmly put Turkey into her corner (not a trivial achievement if you look at the issues of the future of Iran and Syria) and she created a situation in which EU sanctions only hurt the EU.  How one can present that as a defeat for Russia is beyond me.

As for the bad old USA, they are busy sabotaging their own shale gas industry and undermining Saudi Arabia by keeping the oil prices down.  What kind of long-term strategy is that?  It is sustainable?

Finally, while the Empire still talks about sanctions, Russia is busy buying gold.  Lots of gold.

You might wonder what Kiev is doing.  Cutting it's gas consumption in half (leaving a large part of the population without heat or hot water) and stealing the pensions from the people of the Donbass.  But Kiev has nothing to worry about, Lithuania promises to help :-)

So you still think Russia is losing this one?

Por su parte, en Bulgaria todavía no lo pueden creer. Leemos en RT: 

Título: Bulgarian pres calls for South Stream Euro partner talks

Texto: South Stream's European partners should be allowed have their say in the pipeline project's future, the Bulgarian President has said.

"South Stream is not a project of Russia and Bulgaria; it’s of Russia and the European Union. A decision on it can only be made in the Russia-EU format," Rosen Plevneliev said Tuesday.

"The participant states of South Stream have done serious preparatory work and authorized the European Commission to hold talks with the Russian leadership to take a final decision on the project," he said.

The president stressed that there will be no objections to the gas project if Russia agrees to comply with EU legislation.

"I oppose the idea that a kind of confrontation is happening,” he said. “When laws and regulations are observed, all large and small projects work out. I believe that no one in the EU will say ‘no’ to South Stream if Russia complies with the requirements of European legislation," Plevneliev concluded.

Earlier on Tuesday Bulgaria’s Economy Minister Bozidar Lukarsky said the country will consider South Stream an operating project until it receives an official announcement from Russia.
"For me, the South Stream project isn’t closed yet; we haven’t received any official announcement from Russia. When it comes, then we will comment on this topic," said Lukarsky.
Deputy Prime Minister Meglena Kuneva also declined to comment, but stressed that "Bulgaria supports the idea of having a cost-effective project and at the same time comply with European legislation."

Italian construction company Saipem is involved in South Stream construction and has said it continues to work on the project, since it hasn’t received official notification about a halt to South Stream.

Losses to Europe

The ending of the South Stream project would mean huge losses for countries across Europe.
For Bulgaria, this would mean €400 million in lost transit fees, Russian President Putin said on Monday.

The share in the country's €40 billion GDP to come from South Stream was expected to be 1.5 percent, according to Bulgarian Economic Ministry.

Direct investment was supposed to be around €3 billion creating around 2,500 new jobs. The Northern parts of the country, through which the main pipeline route would be laid, were expected to have significantly improved social infrastructure and become more attractive to investment.

The European Commission is impeding the South Stream pipeline construction; however Serbia is interested in the project, the president of the Serbian Gas Association Vojislav Vuletic said Tuesday.

The gas association head thinks the EU is only hurting itself. “It turns out that the problems are created by bureaucrats from the European Commission, while the real participants of South Stream are very interested in the implementation,” he said.

Vuletic also pointed out the project’s importance for Serbia, as it would provide construction jobs, not to mention jobs operating the pipeline itself, and the income the country would get from transit. He confirmed that the closure of the project would seriously damage the Serbian economy.

Hungary has reacted saying that it will be forced to look for alternative sources of gas to replace South Stream supplies. The country could possibly increase the amount it gets from Azerbaijan to compensate, according to the Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Siyyarto.

"Russia had the right to take such a decision, and Hungary admits it," he said, commenting on Russia's decision to close South Stream. Hungary has been actively supporting the project, and passed a special law early last month allowing construction to begin, bypassing restrictions imposed by the EU.

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