Gazprom books modest gas transit capacity to Europe, pushing up prices - Ifx

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The logo of Gazprom company is seen at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) in Saint Petersburg, Russia, June 2, 2021. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina/File Photo

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MOSCOW, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Russian gas exporter Gazprom has booked around a third of the gas transit capacity it was offered for October via the Yamal-Europe pipeline and no extra transit capacity via Ukraine, Interfax reported on Monday, driving European prices higher.

European gas prices have soared recently amid higher demand and lower stocks. Day-ahead prices at the Dutch TTF hub , a European benchmark, have jumped by more than 10% on the day, to 72.3 megawatt hour. read more

Gazprom (GAZP.MM) has booked transit capacity of 31.4 million cubic metres per day via the Yamal-Europe pipeline for October, around a third of the offered volumes, Interfax said.

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The company was offered 89 million cubic metres per day via the pipeline, which goes via Poland, according to the Russian news agency, which cited auction results at an online booking platform.

In 2021 so far, Gazprom has increased its natural gas exports outside the former Soviet Union by 17.4%, year-on-year, to 138.6 billion cubic metres (bcm). The company plans to ship about 183 bcm of gas to Europe this year.

The surge in European prices has led to Norway allowing state-controlled Equinor (EQNR.OL) and its partners to increase gas exports from two offshore fields for the next 12 months.

Last week, a group of European Parliament lawmakers asked the European Commission to investigate Russian state-controlled Gazprom's role in the soaring prices, saying the company's behaviour had made them suspect market manipulation. read more

Gazprom has said it is supplying customers with gas in full compliance with existing contracts.

The company has just completed the Nord Stream 2 pipeline to double its export capacity via the Baltic Sea and is awaiting operating permission from German authorities. read more

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Reporting by Anton Kolodyazhnyy and Vladimir Soldatkin; writing by Alexander Marrow and Katya Golubkova; editing by Jason Neely and Pravin Char

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