Kremlin: Gazprom is supplying as much gas to Europe as possible

Russia’s Gazprom (GAZP.MM) is supplying as much gas to Europe as possible, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Wednesday, adding that sanctions-driven technical issues with equipment were preventing Gazprom from exporting more.

Russia delivered less gas to Europe on Wednesday in a further escalation of an energy stand-off between Moscow and the European Union that will make it harder, and costlier, for the bloc to fill up storage ahead of the winter heating season.

The cut in supplies, flagged by Gazprom earlier this week, has reduced the capacity of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline – the major delivery route to Europe for Russian gas – to a fifth of its capacity, as Russia said another gas turbine needed a repair.

“Gazprom supplies as much as needed and possible. We know that technical possibilities for supplies have decreased now,” Peskov said, adding that European sanctions prevented a timely repair of the Nord Stream 1 equipment.

Peskov said that Gazprom will be able to increase supplies once maintenance is over. “Gazprom was and remains a reliable guarantor of all its obligations but it can not guarantee supplies if foreign equipment could not be serviced due to European sanctions,” he said.