Tallinn, Estonia. In moves that would cause anybody to question their sanity, Estonian regulators are going to ask the European Union to fine Russian utility Gazprom for being their only source of natural gas.
The Estonian government had a meeting on Thursday and decided to request that the European Commission fine Russian utility giant Gazprom for being in a monopoly position in the Estonian gas market.
“Considering the scale of the violation, Estonia believes that the antimonopoly investigation against Gazprom should be completed in a way that ensures the cessation of abuse of the monopoly position, followed by a fine.
The Estonians maintain, in this case, the taking of obligations by Gazprom is not proportional to the size of the violation, considering that the abuse of its monopoly position caused direct economic damage,” says the letter of the EC prepared by Justice Minister Urmas Reinsalu.
“Estonia believes that Gazprom’s obligations are temporary and do not provide a long-term acceptable gas price for consumers. If the EC considers that Gazprom’s proposals are sufficient for Central and Eastern Europe to resolve the situation with the gas market’s competition, then, according to Estonia, Gazprom should supplement the proposals to ensure that abuses cannot be made in the future,” the document says.
Gazprom maintains a monopoly position in Estonia, despite the appearance of an LNG terminal in Klaipeda as an alternative supplier. As a result, “the price of gas for Estonia was disproportionately high, especially in contrast to Western European gas exchanges with a sufficient number of sources of replenishment,” Reinsalu said earlier.
The European Commission has been used as a weapon against Russian business interests for nearly a decade now, in acts of aggression upon businesses EU nations simply are unable to fairly compete with on their own.