Feb 09, 2024

Czechia Imported Over 60% of the Gas from Russia in January

The economist Jiří Pour from UniCredit Bank, has highlighted a concerning trend in the Czech Republic’s gas imports, with Russian gas now representing the majority of deliveries, Novinky.cz writes.

Despite efforts to reduce reliance on Russian imports throughout last year, the statistics have shifted dramatically since November.

Data from NET4GAS indicates a sharp increase in Russian gas imports, particularly through the Lanžhot station from Slovakia, the only entry point for Russian gas into the Czech Republic.

This surge is confirmed by the Czech Statistical Office’s foreign trade statistics for December, revealing a substantial rise in the share of Russian gas in total imports, reaching 58 percent.

Supplies of Russian gas grew to 5.19 billion crowns in December – more than supplies from Norway – from 1.9 billion crowns in November, 700 million in October and much smaller amounts in previous months, CSU data showed.

Mr. Pour points out that while there is speculation about stored gas in Ukrainian reservoirs being imported into the Czech Republic, transit or resale of Russian gas to other countries is unlikely to distort the statistics significantly.

The vast majority of imported gas remains in the Czech Republic, with only a small percentage being exported.

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Moreover, recent trends suggest that the reliance on Russian gas is intensifying, with January’s imports showing a further increase to nearly 62 percent of total imports.

This heightened dependency has economic implications, contributing significantly to Russia’s balance of payments.

The Czech Industry and Trade Ministry said on Wednesday that the flows were the result of a gas glut in central Europe due to warm weather.

“This is a development given by the market situation which does not change anything of the fact that we are independent from supplies from Russia,” the ministry said in emailed answer to Reuters questions.

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