23:30 GMT +317 February 2019
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    Germany Sees No Need for EU Gas Directive Update - Reports

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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Berlin sees no need for an update to the EU Gas Directive, which would require all pipelines on EU territory, including planned Nord Stream 2, to comply with transparency rules, Russian Vedomosti newspaper reported on Thursday, citing Germany's legal opinion transmitted to the European Commission and a European official.

    The updates are not necessary as the European legislation is fully applicable to companies and infrastructure in the European Union, to which the undersea pipeline is connected, the Vedomosti newspaper reported.

    Germany reportedly concluded that the European Commission had not been able to prove that the suggested changes could facilitate the Energy Union, a secure internal market with affordable and environment-friendly energy.

    German legal experts believed that the exemptions from the new rules, already made for several existing pipelines, are defined too vaguely. Nord Stream 2 should also be given an exemption if the updates are approved before the pipeline is completed, because the decision to build it had been made and the funds were already being raised, according to Germany.

    The legal exports reportedly expressed concern over potential new powers on the internal energy market that the European Commission might get through this draft law, while initially intergovernmental agreements were under the purview of participating countries.

    READ MORE: WWF Russia Says Not Against Nord Stream 2 Construction Provided Route Changes

    In November 2017, the European Commission proposed updates to the directive to ensure that all EU rules, including third-party access, tariffs, partial ownership and transparency, apply to all pipelines, which would concern the undersea portion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, expected to extend from Russia to Europe.

    Nord Stream 2 is a joint venture of Russia’s Gazprom with France's Engie, Austria’s OMV AG, UK-Dutch Royal Dutch Shell, and Germany's Uniper and Wintershall.

    German officials and businessmen have sided with Russia to accomplish the project, with German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel and then-Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern issuing a joint statement last summer, calling on Washington to stop interfering with the EU’s energy security.


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