Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says Ukraine and its partners insist that European legislation be fully applied to the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline despite efforts by Russian lobbyists and lawyers to partly exempt the project from EU regulations.
That’s according to the Government portal, Ukrinform reports.
"Together with a number of EU countries and the European Commission, Ukraine insists that Nord Stream 2 be completely in line not only with the spirit but also with the letter of the EU's Third Energy Package. We are working to prevent Russia from turning Nord Stream 2 into a Nord weapon," Kuleba said.
The top diplomat recalled that one of the levers of pressure Russia is exerting on the EU on several fronts of its hybrid war is the Nord Stream 2 certification.
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"Nord Stream 2 was long supposed to be launched and put into operation, but the fact that it is still not working and we are fighting it is the result of our joint efforts. Together with our partners, we significantly slowed down the implementation of this project and won much time to gain better conditions in our confrontation with Russia," the foreign minister said.
The chief of Ukraine’s diplomacy said the ongoing migration crisis, military escalation on the part of the Russian Federation along the border with Ukraine and in the temporarily occupied territories, increased efforts of Russian propaganda across the EU, and Russia's actions to paralyze the Normandy format and the Minsk process for Donbas settlement are all elements of the same game, aimed to up pressure on the EU to force the bloc to concessions. This is the position Ukraine has conveyed to its partners, and they agree with it.
"We see the efforts of Russia’s lawyers and lobbyists, who are trying to find loopholes in European legislation and ensure some sort of special conditions for Nord Stream 2. But we insist that there should be no exceptions," Kuleba said.
The foreign minister reminded that Ukraine had offered a discount on the shipment of Russian gas, but for Russia, Nord Stream 2 is purely a political project, not a commercial one.
"Nord Stream 2 has never been an economic project. This is a security project with the sole aim of bypassing Ukraine, to remove one of the factors deterring Russian aggression," Kuleba concluded.
The minister reminded that the Ukrainian gas transmission system was and remains the safest and most reliable way to ship gas from Russia to the EU.
As Ukrinform reported earlier, the German regulator Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA) suspended the certification process for Nord Stream 2 AG, the pipeline operator, and granted the request of Gas TSO of Ukraine LLC to participate in the procedure. As a result, Russia decided to create a subsidiary under German law, which would become owner and operator of the pipe’s German-based part.
Construction of Nord Stream 2 was completed in early September 2021. The pipe was laid from Russia to Germany, bypassing Ukraine, along the bottom of the Baltic Sea. The only shareholder in the project is Russia’s energy giant Gazprom.
The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden and the German government of Angela Merkel have signed an agreement regarding Nord Stream 2, which allows Russia to complete the pipeline in exchange for security guarantees for Europe.
Following the official announcement of the deal between Germany and the United States, Ukraine initiated consultations with the European Commission and Germany.