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Russian troops have attacked a natural gas pipeline in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, reported Reuters, citing the country’s state service of special communications and information protection.

Further details regarding the importance of the pipeline, and whether the explosion affects natural gas shipments, were undisclosed.

Despite the ongoing war, Ukraine continues to ship Russian natural gas to European nations.

In a separate announcement, Ukraine’s state energy firm Naftogaz had closed and evacuated all of its staff from the Shebelinsky oil refinery, which is located in the eastern Kharkiv region, owing to a risk from hostilities amid Russia’s war on the country, according to the news agency.

Although the firm suspended operations at the plant, it continues to operate underground gas storage facilities.

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By GlobalData

Ukraine’s gas producer Ukrgasvydobuvannya has also suspended several production facilities, as well as evacuated its staff from these operations, reported Reuters.

Naftogaz was cited by the news agency as saying that the loss from the suspension of these facilities currently stand at approximately 1 million cubic metres of gas per day.

Production is planned to be restored once the situation in the country is stabilised.

In the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Germany said it will prepare to accelerate its plan to develop two LNG terminals, reported Bloomberg News, citing German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

The move comes as the country looks to reduce its dependence on gas imports from Russia.

It also comes days after Germany shelved the $11bn pipeline project that is designed to bring Russian gas to Europe.

Scholz was cited by the publication as saying to the parliament, in Berlin: “The events of the last few days and weeks have shown us that a responsible, forward-looking energy policy is not only crucial for our economy and our climate, but also crucial for our security.

“We will change course in order to overcome our import dependency on individual energy suppliers.”

Without disclosing the plan for the proposed LNG plants, Scholz said that the government was weighing financial support and incentives for potential investors.