The European Commission received a mandate for negotiations on the «Nord stream-2»

© RIA Novosti / Sergey Goneeverything in PhotoBank shop ETERNO JSC Chelyabinsk tube rolling plant. Archival photoThe European Commission received a mandate for negotiations on the «Nord stream-2»© RIA Novosti / Sergey Goneeverything the image Bank

The European Commission received a mandate for talks with Russia on «to Northern stream-2», and now will present it to the participating countries, said Vice-President of the European Commission on energy Union Maros Sefcovic in Astana.

The Commission previously sent a request to the Council about getting a mandate to negotiate with Moscow to create a special legal basis on which, in the opinion of the EC, should work the future gas pipeline.

Russian energy Minister Alexander Novak said that the Russian side had not yet received the document. «Mr Šefčovič, I was informed that just yesterday the European Commission received a mandate. We this document is not yet seen, we will have to study it, to watch it,» the Minister said at a press conference. He noted that «to date, all relationships are built this project on a commercial basis».

«We agreed that we will continue our consultations, talks with maroš Šefčovič. I think the end of August — beginning of September we will meet to conduct our further dialogue,» — said the Minister.

A dangerous precedent

2 Nord Stream AG (project company «Nord stream-2», subsidiary company «Gazprom») believe that the creation of a special legal framework for the pipeline for political reasons would set a dangerous precedent for any private investment in the infrastructure of the European Union.

«It is unacceptable that among all the competitive pipeline projects the European Commission as the guarantor of European treaties highlights the «Nord stream-2″ and creates for him a special political approach. This violates the principle of equal treatment, which is one of the fundamental elements of the treaties of the European Union», — stated in the message that the company published on Friday.

«The European Commission’s position has implications far beyond the project «Northern stream-2″. She provokes legal uncertainty where there is none, and undermines the statements by the EC that it defends the interests of the market,» Nord Stream AG 2.

The company emphasizes that in signing the agreement the EU and Russia «Nord stream-2» is not necessary. The legal framework for the construction of «Nord stream-2» exists, the project is undergoing the procedure of obtaining building permits in the countries on whose territory the pipeline will pass.

Is not subject to all the rules of the internal market of the European Union third energy package, since the tube will not pass through the ground part of the EU, but will go through the sea. Therefore, the European Commission expresses its desire to reach agreement with Russia on a number of key principles that will be circulated on the work of this pipeline.

Among them is the transparency of its functioning, non-discriminatory tariffs for pumping gas, third party access to the ability to pump gas, and separation activities for the sale and transportation of gas.

The official representative Nord Stream AG 2 in March, telling RIA Novosti that the company does not believe such negotiations are necessary, as the legal structure for the project is clear.

To bring under European laws «the back door»

According to the lawyer, the Professor of energy law at the University of Helsinki, Finland Kim Talus, the main issue is the content of a possible agreement.

«It will be unacceptable if the only motive to the conclusion of an intergovernmental agreement will be the desire of the European Commission, which was faced with the fact that the project does not fall under the European energy law and the third energy package, to bring the «Nord stream-2» under the law «the back door», via the intergovernmental agreement, or worse, to block the project for political reasons. There must be a reason for negotiations on the intergovernmental agreement, and the role of intergovernmental agreements and involved in his conclusion, countries are usually is to facilitate, not the opposition.»

The expert stressed that the project implementation does not require resolution of any legislative issues the intergovernmental agreement. The process of construction of the pipeline is governed by international and European law and national legislation, and the operator of the gas pipeline may be regulated by the decisions of the operator or the agreements between the companies involved in the management of the pipeline.

© AFP 2017 / Eric PiermontПодписание financing agreement «Nord stream-2» between Nord Stream AG and 2 European partners in ParisThe European Commission received a mandate for negotiations on the «Nord stream-2»© AFP 2017 / Eric PiermontПодписание financing agreement «Nord stream-2» between Nord Stream AG and 2 European partners in Paris