Germany seeks to help Nord Stream 2 bypass gas directive

In order to circumvent the new EU gas Directive, the German government submitted a draft to the Bundestag, according to which Gazprom with Nord stream-2 will be able to count on an exception to the Directive.

The ruling coalition in the German government has developed a new bill that will exclude the Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline under construction from the action of the updated EU gas directive. This was reported by the newspaper Bild on Wednesday, November 6.

The EU Gas Directive, updated this year, provides for an obligation to separate the pipeline operator, independent of the company supplying it with gas. Changes to the directive also allowed it to be extended to pipelines from third countries, in particular Nord Stream-2.

As a result of its implementation, Gazprom will no longer be able to own the gas pipeline and at the same time sell the gas that flows through this pipe. Russian legislation gives Gazprom a monopoly on the export of natural gas outside of Russia.

The gas directive makes an exception for gas pipelines that were built before May 23, 2019 – it does not apply to them.

In September, the German government submitted to the Bundestag a draft ratification of the updated gas directive, which contains a record on the date of May 23, 2019.

However, from the documents that the German edition got access to, it follows that this entry is not in the amendment filed on November 5 by the ruling coalition of the CDU / CSU and the SPD – two days before the vote for the project in the Bundestag.

According to coalition parties, the gas directive “gives privileged status to existing investments in order to protect legitimate expectations. (…) In this context, when determining whether a project has been completed before the date of entry into force (legislation), all circumstances should be taken into account business”.

The amendment provides for the replacement of the date with the phrase “existing investment”. This means that ongoing investments, such as Nord Stream-2, can count on exclusion from EU law.

The publication notes that this will be a clear violation of the EU directive, which Brussels accurately describes as unacceptable.

As previously reported, the Danish energy agency issued Nord Stream 2 AG permission to lay Nord Stream-2 along the route southeast of the island of Bornholm.

Denmark was the last country that still has not issued permission to build a Russian gas pipeline.

In turn, the head of Naftogaz Andrey Kobolev called the expected decision of Denmark on the Nord Stream-2.


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