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Russia lost over 50% of European gas market over last year

Russia lost over 50% of European gas market over last year Russian Gazprom has lost its largest gas market (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

The supply of natural gas to Europe by the Russian energy monopoly Gazprom in 2023 decreased by 55.6% to 28.3 billion cubic meters, according to Reuters.

In 2022, Russia delivered about 63.8 billion cubic meters of gas to Europe through various routes. Gazprom has not disclosed its own statistics since the beginning of 2023.

The export of Russian gas to Europe, once its primary export market, sharply declined due to the political consequences of the invasion of Ukraine. At its peak in 2018-2019, the annual flow reached 175-180 billion cubic meters.

Calculations based on data from the European gas transmission group Entsog and daily reports from Gazprom on gas transit through Ukraine indicate that the average daily pipeline exports of Russian gas to Europe decreased to 77.6 million cubic meters in 2023, compared to 174.8 million cubic meters in 2022.

Putin's failed strategy

Russian President Vladimir Putin made a bet on an energy crisis in Europe last year by suspending the supply of pipeline gas. Moscow's propaganda actively promoted the idea that "Europe would freeze" without Russian gas.

However, proactive measures by the EU, increased imports from other countries, reduced consumption, and mild weather led to a winter without disruptions, and prices sharply decreased.

As a result, Gazprom effectively lost its main market in Europe, which used to bring in billions of dollars annually. In 2021, Gazprom exported 185 billion cubic meters of gas to the "far abroad," with around 10 billion cubic meters going to China.

Besides, half of Russia's oil and oil product exports in 2023 went to China, while India's share increased to 40% in two years. Europe's share in Russia's oil exports plummeted approximately tenfold to 4-5%, down from roughly 40-45%.