The European Commission adopted on June 9 a request for the Council of the European Union for a mandate to negotiate with the Russian Federation the key principles for the operation of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project.

The Commission seeks to ensure that, if built, Nord Stream 2 operates in a transparent and non-discriminatory way with an appropriate degree of regulatory oversight, in line with key principles of international and EU energy law.

“Creating a well-diversified and competitive gas market is a priority of the EU’s energy security and Energy Union strategy,” European Commission Vice-President for Energy Union Maroš Šefčovič said.

“As we have stated already several times, Nord Stream 2 does not contribute to the Energy Union’s objectives. If the pipeline is nevertheless built, the least we have to do is to make sure that it will be operated in a transparent manner and in line with the main EU energy market rules,” he added.

Meanwhile, Climate Action and Energy Miguel Commissioner Arias Cañete said that, any other infrastructure project in the EU, Nord Stream 2 cannot and should not operate in a legal void or according to a third country’s energy laws only. “We are seeking to obtain a Council mandate to negotiate with Russia a specific regime which will apply key principles of EU energy law to Nord Stream 2 to preserve the functioning of the European internal energy market,” Cañete said.

The Commission said the EC is committed to the Energy Union objectives, including energy security. The priority is to create a well-diversified and competitive gas market, the Commission said, adding that the work to consequently dismantle barriers to trade and supporting critical gas infrastructure is ongoing.

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