OREANDA-NEWS. Russia is one of the main culprits in the unprecedented rise in energy prices in the European Union, and the European authorities must urgently take some steps to address the problem that threatens industry and European citizens. This is stated in a letter sent by the Minister of Climate and Environment of Poland Michal Kurtyka to the Deputy Chairman of the European Commission Margreta Vestager, the Polish Press Agency reports.

The official pointed out that Gazprom is deliberately underestimating the volume of gas supplies to the European Union. In recent months, his actions are different from what happened in previous years. For example, the Russian company does not reserve additional capacities for deliveries via the Yamal-Europe gas pipeline passing through Poland and via the gas transmission system (GTS) of Ukraine.

The restrictions on gas transit, the Polish minister stressed, already exceed 60 percent, and since November they will reach 90 percent through the Yamal gas pipeline and 55 percent through the Ukrainian GTS.

According to Kurtyka, the scale of the crisis is unparalleled. Energy prices have increased 12 times compared to last year. This is significantly more than was observed in the 1970s during the oil crises.

Earlier it became known that a group of about 40 MEPs, representing Poland and the Baltic states, applied to the European Commission with an official request to conduct an antitrust investigation against Gazprom. They believed that the Russian company was directly responsible for the rise in gas prices. The reason for such actions is the desire to speed up the certification of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, with the help of which it will be possible to launch supplies bypassing Ukraine.

Russia denies such accusations. Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak stressed that Gazprom is fulfilling all contracts, and the reason for the rise in prices is the short-sightedness and incompetence of European officials, who relied on exchange fuel supplies.

In turn, the head and co-owner of the second largest gas company Novatek, Leonid Mikhelson, called Europe's position untranslatable into Russian. He recalled that, on the one hand, the EU requires Russia to increase fuel supplies, and on the other hand, it opposes the financing of gas projects in the Arctic, where 80 percent of Russian gas is produced.