Vitaly’s key points:
- The finalization of Nord Stream 2 construction, now imminent, marks the success of Russia's strategy of minimizing the risks of third country transit.
- This strategy stems from the fundamental changes in the geography of Russian gas supply and the new configuration of Russian pipelines that connect new productive capacity on Yamal with the target market of Germany with the shortest possible route through the northern regions of Russia and via Nord Streams.
- Conversely, the irreversible decline of gas production in Russia's legacy fields in Nadym-Pur-Taz and ageing pipeline infrastructure leading towards Ukraine create constraints on future transit flows through Ukraine.
- The characterization of Nord Stream 2 as a "redundant" pipeline fails to consider these important facts and leads to false expectations regarding the future role of Ukrainian transit.