Eastward Yamal Gas Flows from Germany to Poland Increase

MOSCOW (Reuters) — Gas flows from Germany to Poland via the Yamal-Europe pipeline, which usually sends Russian gas westward into Europe, increased on Friday, data from German network operator Gascade showed.

The pipeline, which usually accounts for about a sixth of Russia's annual gas exports to Europe and Turkey, has been operating in reverse mode since Dec. 21, putting upward pressure on European gas prices.

Eastbound flows on Friday were at 9.3 million kWh/h, up about 7.1 million kWh/h over the previous 24 hours, data from the Mallnow metering point on the German-Polish border showed. Flows are expected to remain around this level until the early hours of Saturday.

European benchmark gas prices jumped to a record 184.95 euros per megawatt hour (MWh) on Dec. 21 when the Yamal system reversed flow.

Those high prices have discouraged the buying of spot volumes from Russia, with buyers instead tapping stored gas in Europe, where storage levels have fallen below their five-year average.

Capacity nominations for supply to Slovakia from Ukraine via the Velke Kapusany border point, another major route for Russian gas deliveries to Europe, stayed below this year's highest point on Wednesday.

Nominations were seen at 464,276 MWh, down from re-nominated level of 522,164 MWh on Thursday and 604,793 on Wednesday.

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