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Canada Agrees To Return Russian Turbine Despite New Sanctions

Canada has agreed to return a Gazprom turbine that Siemens Energy sent to a factory in the North American country for repairs earlier this year despite fresh Canadian sanctions on Russia that have for weeks delayed the return of the equipment.

The decision comes after calls from Germany to return the turbines, so, according to Economy Minister Robert Habeck, Russia has no excuse to keep gas flows along Nord Stream 1 at 40 percent of the pipeline's capacity.

At the same time, the Ukrainian government was quick to say it was deeply disappointed by the decision of the Canadian authorities, which, according to a statement by the country's energy ministry, amount to an adjustment of sanctions "to the whims of Russia."

The Canadian government said this weekend, as reported by Reuters, that it would issue a "time-limited and revocable permit" for the return of the turbine, effectively exempting it from its new package of sanctions.

Ottawa also said, perhaps in a bid to appease Kyiv, that it would slap more sanctions on Russia's energy industry.

The new sanctions, the Canadian government said, "will apply to land and pipeline transport and the manufacturing of metals and of transport, computer, electronic and electrical equipment, as well as of machinery."

Meanwhile, the return of the Gazprom turbine would ensure "Europe's ability to access reliable and affordable energy as they continue to transition away from Russian oil and gas".

Reuters noted in its report, however, that it remains unclear how long the journey of the turbine back to Russia would take. Gazprom has said that if the turbine is returned, it will increase gas flows via Nord Stream 1.

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The pipeline, meanwhile, enters into regularly scheduled maintenance today, to last for 10 days. Germany has concerns that Gazprom might decide not to restart gas flows after the end of the maintenance period in retaliation for European sanctions.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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