Russia will begin pumping its first gas through the Nord Stream pipeline on Tuesday, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on television today. so that European clients could receive gas next month or in November.
"Tomorrow we will start pumping technical gas near Vyborg," Putin said during a meeting of the United Russia party.
The 7.4 billion euro pipeline has a projected capacity of 55 billion cubic metres of gas per year. The pipeline will deliver gas directly to Europe, bypassing transit countries such as Ukraine and Belarus.
"Gradually, in a calm manner we are departing from the diktat of transit states," Putin said in televised remarks, speaking from the city of Cherepovets in northwestern Russia.
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