Analysis by Márton Ugrósdy.
On June 18, 2015, Russian energy giant Gazprom together with three major European companies (Germany’s E.On, British–Dutch Royal Dutch Shell and Austria’s OMV) announced they had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to expand the Nord Stream pipeline, carrying natural gas from the Russian town of Vyborg to the German Greifswald in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. If the planned extension of further 55 billion cubic meters per year (bcmy) will be realized, Nord Stream 1–4 will have a total capacity of 110 bcmy, enough to cover roughly 75 percent of the current Russian natural gas export to the European Union. The extended Nord
Stream, together with the planned Turkish Stream will re-route Russian natural gas exports to Europe in order to circumvent Ukraine, which will significantly decrease of the leverage of Kyiv vis-a-vis Russia, accomplishing one longstanding goal of the Kremlin.