Russian President Vladimir Putin has hinted that the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline could restart its gas flows to Europe, but only under certain conditions. The flows will be tightly curbed if a dispute over sanctioned parts is not settled. 

However, if part of the pipeline that is caught up in sanctions is not returned to Russia, the link will only operate at 20% capacity from next week. This limitation will result from another part that is currently in Russia and needs to go for maintenance, according to Putin. Due to Germany’s diplomatic approach, the requested turbine has been shipped from Canada. 

Putin said in a summit in Iran on Tuesday: “If another comes, two will operate. If not, just one, so 30 million cubic meters will be pumped per day.” 

He also said that he expects the parts back in Russia with all its paperwork. 

Nord Stream 1 can pump around 55bcm to the EU in a year; In 2021, Russia imported 140bcm of gas to Europe through pipelines. 

Last month, Kremlin-controlled energy giant Gazprom reduced gas exports through Nord Stream 1 to 40% capacity, stating delays in the return of a turbine that Siemens Energy was fixing in Canada, which had first prohibited the equipment’s return citing sanctions.

European Commission spokesperson Eric Mamer said: “What Gazprom is going to do tomorrow is your best guess as well as ours. What is clear is that when we are preparing winter contingency plans, we base ourselves on the worst possible scenario.”