German split over Russian gas pipeline

Cheryl Sanders
February 10, 2019

Speaking at a press conference, Ms Merkel declared: "Do we become dependent on Russian Federation because of this second gas pipeline?".

The draft compromise sought to tackle concerns over Ukraine saying: "We consider a (gas rules) directive in this spirit indispensable for a fruitful discussion on the future gas transit through Ukraine". "Yes, we are ready to support the Ukrainian Transit will continue, but under the terms we need".

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the agreement in the European Union on the question of amendments to the Gas Directive and implementation of the project Nord stream-2. The French government has earned credit this week for being prepared to stand firm against one such effort, a gas pipeline stretching from Russian Federation to Germany, despite provoking the ire of Germany.

A previous wording of the proposed changes to the European Gas Directive suggested that the EU rules would extend to "the territory of the member states" and or the "territorial sea of the member states".

Eastern European, Nordic and Baltic Sea countries see the 1,225 km pipeline increasing EU reliance on Moscow, while those in northern Europe, especially Germany, prioritise the economic benefits.

Nord Stream 2 AG, with Gazprom being the only shareholder, is the operator of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline construction project. Therefore, the line should be built to the end.

Paris has settled on a compromise with Berlin, allowing Germany to remain the key negotiator with Russian Federation on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to Europe.

With France's support, Germany could have countered the efforts of several states to bring North Stream 2 under European Union regulations, thus making it less likely.

"It would be fatal, if a fully approved billion-euro project, in which billions have been invested, could suddenly no longer be carried out", OMV CEO Rainer Seele said earlier this week. The move could have derailed the undersea pipeline plans between Russian Federation and Germany.

The EU executive wants a say over how Nord Stream 2 is used before its construction, which involves European companies, is completed. "I say "no", if we diversify at the same time", Merkel told a news conference in Bratislava, where she met the leaders of the Visegrad group - Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

The French Ministry of foreign Affairs had initially announced on Thursday, the government in Paris wool unlike Germany votes for a tightening of the rules for Pipelines from third countries.

Although Reinhard Bütikofer was critical of Richard Grenell's DW column, the chairman of the European Green party said, "it is extremely embarrassing for German politics that our government insists upon being the very last to acknowledge that Nord Stream 2 runs counter to European and German interests".

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