EU country doubles Russian gas imports

Austrian energy major OMV has been ramping up purchases under its long-term contract with Gazprom

Austrian energy conglomerate OMV purchased an average of 5.4 terawatt-hours –or over 55 million cubic meters– of Russian natural gas on a monthly basis last quarter, according to a statement from the company on Tuesday. 

The amount is more than double compared to last year’s import during the same period for OMV’s total supply to Austria and Germany.

The purchase is part of the company’s long-term agreement with Russia’s Gazprom, OMV said.

“The uncertainty regarding future delivery volumes remains and could result in further substantial losses, in particular, in case actual deliveries materially deviate from nominated volumes,” the statement reads.

According to the report, in the third quarter of 2022 OMV imported a total of 2.5 terawatt hours (TWh) of gas –amounting to more than 25 million cubic meters (mcm)– monthly from Gazprom for its supply to Austria and Germany. In the following quarter, the supply increased slightly, to 2.8 TWh (up to 29 mcm), with the entire volume flowing to Austria.

In the first quarter of this year, OMV bought an average of 4.8 TWh (49.6 mcm) of gas from Gazprom for supply to Austria, while in the second quarter the volume amounted to 4.9 TWh.

READ MORE: Austria to keep buying Russian gas, energy giant says

OMV covers around 30% of Austria’s gas needs. Last year, the company was among the first to agree to pay for Russian gas in rubles under a new settlement mechanism that Moscow introduced and is mandatory for ‘unfriendly countries’ that have imposed sanctions on Russia. OMV’s chief executive Alfred Stern said at the time that abandoning Russian gas was impossible for Austria and would have dire consequences for its economy and energy security.

Stern recently told the Financial Times that OMV will adhere to its long-term contract with Gazprom and does not plan to exit the agreement any time soon. The contract with Gazprom was signed in 2018 and runs until 2040.

“As long as Gazprom will supply… we will continue to take these quantities from Gazprom,” the CEO stated.

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