Lithuanian MEP addresses European Commission over Nord Stream

Sunday, 12 July 2015

An address to the European Commission (EC) regarding gas pipeline Nord Stream has been submitted on the initiative of Member of the European Parliament Petras Austrevicius. The EC has been asked to evaluate the intentions to lay new gas pipeline Nord Stream from Russia to Germany through the bottom of the Baltic Sea. The EC has been also asked to evaluate the impact of the Gazprom's project on the European Union (EU) member states. The address was backed by signatures of a number of MEPs.

According to Austrevicius, the letter of intent signed on 18 June between Russian concern Gazprom and companies Shell, E.On and OMV regarding the construction of the new gas pipeline fundamentally violates strategic goals of the EU to prevent monopolies in the European gas market. In addition, it contravenes the European Energy Security Strategy prepared by the EC as well as the provisions of the European Energy Union.

"The new Russian gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea are meant to disrupt Europe's solidarity. That is what is happening now. The European Commission should not remain a passive observer of events. Gazprom and the Russian Government are expecting obedience and the lack of integrity. Especially when we hear claims from the Kremlin that the European Commission's verdict for the expansion of Nord Stream is not needed," said MEP Austrevicius, Vice-Chair of the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe.

The MEP says it is a bad sign that on 10 June the European Parliament rejected an important report on the European Energy Security Strategy. "Wasn't it a bad foretaste of Nord Stream gas? It seems Europe has not yet gotten rid of political dependence on Russian gas, the situation is again turning for the worse," said Austrevicius.

Austrevicius has also asked the Lithuanian Government to evaluate the letter of intent on Nord Stream expansion and its impact. "I feel the lack of our Government's position. I urge not to downplay this issue of strategic importance during the summer holidays because it may be too late afterwards," emphasised the MEP.

The EC has been asked to assess how the expansion of Nord Stream project would affect the security, political and economic situation of EU member states and Ukraine.

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