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Berlin rejects «political» background in move to suspend Nord Stream 2 certification.

Germany has decried allegations of political motives behind the decision to suspend the certification process as regards Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project.

That’s according to a statement by Germany’s Ministry of Economy and Energy, released on Wednesday, November 17, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

"This regulatory act is not a political move, it is purely about regulatory issues," the ministry spokeswoman said.

Read also: Moscow trying to weaken Europe on several fronts - Kuleba

The agency noted that the Federal Network Agency is the only body responsible for the certification process. During the audit, the regulator concluded that an operator requesting Nord Stream 2 certification shall organize its work in such a way that it complies with German law.

"This condition must be met," the ministry spokeswoman told a briefing.

Swiss-based Nord Stream 2 AG has decided to refrain from reformatting an existing company and to establish a subsidiary operating under German law that would own and operate a German section of the pipe. It’s the subsidiary that will have to meet the requirements of the Energy Act regarding the independence of the transmission network operator, say German officials.

As soon as the Federal Network Agency receives all the necessary documents (on unbundling), the certification process will be extended within the specified period of 4 months from the date of application.

It was earlier reported that the German regulator had suspended the process of Nord Stream 2 AG certification as an independent transmission network operator. After thoroughly studying the documentation, the Federal Network Agency came to the conclusion that the certification of the Nord Stream 2 operator would be possible only if the operator's work was organized in a way that legally complies with German law, the agency explained. The officials noted that the certification process would remain suspended until the transfer of core assets and human resources to the subsidiary was completed and the Federal Network Agency could verify the completeness of documentation, newly submitted by the subsidiary as a new applicant.

Read also: Moscow trying to weaken Europe on several fronts - Kuleba

NJSC Naftogaz of Ukraine and Gas TSO of Ukraine were recently admitted to taking part in the said certification process.

Construction of Nord Stream 2 was completed in early September. The pipeline was laid from Russia to Germany along the bottom of the Baltic Sea, thus bypassing Ukraine. Russia’s Gazprom energy giant is a sole shareholder in the project.

According to Naftogaz CEO Yuriy Vitrenko, the launch of Nord Stream 2 "will strengthen Gazprom's dominance and strike at competition in the markets of Slovakia, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Austria and other European countries."

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