Russian gas producer Gazprom reported on 16 January, 2017, that its gas exports to Germany hit a record high in 2016 and have surged since the start of this year and its exports to Turkey increased by 25.5% in the 1st half of this month from a year earlier.
The continued high flows in 2017 - following record-breaking volumes last year - come as cold weather across Europe, especially in the east, triggers increased demand for Gazprom gas.
Russian gas prices also remain competitive compared with European hubs - the oil price rally of end-2016 will only filter through to oil-indexed gas contracts in the coming months - so European buyers are thought to be maxing out their Russian gas purchases.
In a statement Monday, Gazprom said gas flows to what it calls the Far Abroad - Europe and Turkey but not the ex-Soviet states - were 25.5% higher than in the same period of 2016.
In absolute terms, the increase amounted to about 1.9 Bcm of gas, Gazprom said.
Flows to Germany were 20.7% higher in January 1-15, it said, without giving absolute volumes.
We are reaching record levels through the Nord Stream pipeline, CEO Alexei Miller said.
Russian gas flows via the Nord Stream pipeline to Europe continue to run at maximum capacity, with flows to Germany at 158 million cu m on Monday, according to data from Platts Analytics' Eclipse Energy.
Of that, 76 million cu m was delivered into the OPAL pipeline to the Czech Republic, up on the average 44 million cu m/d in 2016 before Gazprom was granted additional capacity in OPAL in October by the European Commission.
Flows into OPAL continue at these higher levels despite uncertainty over the legality of the European Commission decision to allow Gazprom to use more capacity in OPAL after an appeal by Poland's PGNiG.
The increased flows through Nord Stream come at the expense of exports of Russian gas via Ukraine, which have fallen by the same amount since mid-December.
That implies volumes are simply being diverted to the Nord Stream route away from the Ukraine route, the former being a cheaper route to market for European buyers.
Gazprom's supplies to Europe and Turkey hit a total of 179.3 Bcm in 2016, a significant jump on its previous highest level of 161.5 Bcm from 2013 and well above the 2015 total of 158.6 Bcm.