Crack in Forties pipeline forces UK to turn to Yamal LNG to meet demand

The discovery of a crack in the North Sea’s Forties gas pipeline and its subsequent temporary closure for repairs has forced the UK to order gas from Russia’s giant Yamal LNG plant to help it meet domestic demand over the winter, it was announced yesterday. The news comes less than a week after Russian President Vladimir Putin watched the first tanker laden with  liquefied natural gas from the project set sail from the Arctic  port of Sabetta.
 At the time that  the tanker was leaving Sabetta Novatek, which controls a majority shareholding in Yamal LNG, said that the inaugural cargo of 170,000m³ of LNG aboard the Christophe de Margerie had been sold to an Asian buyer. It now transpires that that buyer was the Malaysian-owned Petronas LNG UK  (PLUK), which has now despatched it to England where it is due to arrive at the Isle of Grain terminal in Kent on December 28 and could be heating British homes early in the new year.
The UK normally  produces enough gas to meet almost half of its needs (45%) from the North Sea and the East Irish Sea, and also imports a further 38%, the majority of which comes from Norway rather than Russia, however.
Moscow has been  repeatedly accused of using its energy supplies to other nations as a political weapon, particularly by sporadically cutting pipeline gas to the Ukraine. The accusations cut both ways, however, and  the state-owned oil company Rosneft this week reopened a legal challenge against EU sanctions levied against the company on the back of the 2014  annexation of Crimea. The company (whose shareholders include BP and the Swiss commodity trader Glencore) will  argue that the EU has not provided significant grounds for the imposition of sanctions. Ironically, given the impending arrival of the Christophe de Margerie  in the South of England, the sanctions include restrictions on the supply of goods and services for use in the Arctic, deepwater and shale projects and in oil production in Russia.
“Sanctions are a method of a competitive battle,” Rosneft said in court documents seen by Reuters adding that the sanctions aspired to “increase risks of business operations for Russia and make conditions to force Russian companies out of the Asia-Pacific region, where the level of energy consumption is constantly growing.”
It also claims that they had had  a “reverse effect” and had  hurt European oil companies, suppliers, banks and investors.“Like a boomerang, sanctions hit the industry and financial sector of Europe. In Germany 300,000 workplaces depend on production of equipment to be imported to Russia.”  
At a meeting in Brussels today, 
EU leaders are expect to agree extend sanctions for another six months.

Source: thetimes