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Helmsley Energy's Founder and Managing Partner, Benedict McAleenan, was interviewed by international news network Al Jazeera. You can view the full article here.
Russia's decision to cut Poland and Bulgaria off from its gas supplies is an escalation in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. The intention is to divide European states, said Benedict.
Benedict McAleenan, a managing partner at Helmsley Energy and senior fellow at the Policy Exchange think-tank in London, said Putin wished to divide European nations and break down their united stance.
“It also works by raising uncertainty in gas markets, which pushes up prices and boosts Russian income,” McAleenan told Al Jazeera. “Poland and Germany had just struck a deal that would help Germany to join oil sanctions against Russia by using Polish pipelines to supply German refineries, and Putin is trying to punish them for it.”
“Meanwhile, Bulgaria’s government has shown support for Ukraine, but it has long had a big pro-Russia element. Putin probably thinks he can switch Sofia’s position by giving those pro-Russian agitators something to talk about.”
“Really the only routes out are if Russia stops attacking its neighbour, or Europe moves very quickly to a system of lower energy demand, more renewables, nuclear power and a lot more LNG,” McAleenan said. “The other prospect is an international recession, which could help reduce prices, but is hardly something to wish for.”