Canada rescinds sanctions exemptions for Nord Stream turbines

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Canada rescinds sanctions exemptions for Nord Stream turbines

Last summer, Canada sent a turbine back to Europe for use in the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, which carries Russian gas to Germany. This turbine was repaired in Montreal.

Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson announced that Canada has revoked sanctions exemptions that allowed a Montreal company to repair the turbines of a gas pipeline operated by Russian energy giant Gazprom.

The decision was made on Wednesday, three months after an explosion on part of the pipeline that runs under the Baltic Sea rendered it unusable. According to Swedish investigators who conducted the preliminary investigation, it was an act of sabotage.

Canada is making this decision recognizing that the circumstances surrounding the granting of the permit have changed, Ministers Jonathan Wilkinson (Natural Resources) and Mélanie Joly (Foreign Affairs) said in a joint statement.

The permit no longer fulfills the function intended for it, reads the declaration of the two ministers.

In July, Siemens Energy obtained an exemption from the Canada sanctions Russia to repair up to six turbines of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline, which carries natural gas to Germany.

Ottawa had justified its decision to grant an exemption by saying that it wanted to help Europe deal with the energy crisis and demonstrate the bluff of Vladimir Putin's regime.

Russia began limiting gas flows to Germany in June, citing maintenance issues. Germany, facing an energy supply crisis, has asked Canada to exempt the turbines from sanctions imposed on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.

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Canada agreed, hoping to prove that Mr. Putin would not ship more gas to Germany even after the repaired turbine returned.

By granting this permit, the government was able to ensure that Putin could no longer use this excuse [maintenance] to cover up his refusal to export gas to Europe, ministers Wilkinson and Joly recalled on Wednesday.

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After the permit was granted, Putin showed his true position by refusing to increase Nord Stream 1 exports to normal levels. In effect, Russia refused to accept the turbine which was repaired and returned under this permit. It remains in Germany to this day, according to the federal.

The exemption concerned six turbines, but only one was already in Canada. The other five were not shipped to the country as a result of the exemption.

Canada's exemption caused a stir in the political arena: Germany was desperate for access to more energy, while Ukraine accused Canada of playing Mr Putin's game.

A House of Commons committee was formed to look into the matter and held several hearings, but meetings ceased in November when the Tories accused the Liberals of filibuster. The committee has not met on this issue since mid-November.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke on the phone with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz Tuesday, and the issue of energy and exemptions was addressed. According to his official schedule, Mr. Trudeau is scheduled to meet with the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, on Thursday.

Ukraine has many ;elsewhere already informed of the decision to end the turbine exemptions.

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