MOSCOW (Reuters) -The Yamal-Europe pipeline that usually delivers Russian gas to Western Europe was sending the fuel back to Poland for an eighth straight day on Tuesday, according to data from German network operator Gascade.
Data showed flows at the Mallnow metering point on the German-Polish border were going east into Poland at an hourly volume of nearly 1.2 million kilowatt hours (kWh/h) on Tuesday morning, down from around 2 million kWh overnight.
The pipeline is a major route for Russian gas exports to Europe.
Auction results showed Russian gas exporter Gazprom had not booked gas transit capacity for exports via the Yamal-Europe pipeline for Tuesday.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said last week that Germany was reselling Russian gas to Poland and Ukraine rather than relieving an overheated market, putting blame for the reversal, and rocketing prices, on German gas importers.
The German Economy Ministry has declined comment on Putin's remark. Gas importers have not responded to Reuters requests for comment.
Germany's Federal Grid Agency said the current flow direction reflects the behaviour of market players, while the German market is supplied via other transport routes.
"A gas flow at German border crossing points towards neighbouring countries to the east is not unusual. A flexible gas flow in both directions at border crossing points in the EU is desired in response to market signals and to ensure security of supply, and is to be made possible in principle according to the legal requirements," it said in a statement.
Russia supplies gas to Germany via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline as well.
Data from Slovak pipeline operator Eustream showed capacity nominations for Tuesday's Russian gas flows from Ukraine to Slovakia via the Velke Kapusany border point were at 773,712 megawatt hours (MWh), rising a touch from Monday but below levels seen earlier in December.
(For EXPLAINER-Stuck in reverse? Russia's Yamal-Europe gas pipeline, click on:)
(Reporting by Oksana Kobzeva and Vladimir Soldatkin in Moscow, Jason Hovet in Prague and Anneli Palmen in Berlin; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell and Susan Fenton)