Germany halts the certification process for the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline

The German Federal Network Agency announced on Tuesday the paralysis of the certification of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, controlled by the giant Russian gas company Gazprom.

According to a statement published by the Agency, the certification process, without which the gas pipeline cannot start operating under penalty of incurring sanctions, was suspended provisionally.

“A certification from the operator of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline can only be considered if the operator takes a legal form in accordance with German law, “reads the statement from the Bundesnetzagentur.

Surrounded by controversy

The pipeline directly transports Russian gas to Western Europe via Germany without going through Ukraine and it has been surrounded by a great controversy, with the initial opposition of the United States, which last July gave its approval in exchange for the protection of the Ukrainian energy supply.

The Agency indicates that the company Nord Stream 2AG, based in Switzerland, has decided to create a subsidiary under German law to manage the German section of the gas pipeline, which in this case must adhere to the requirements established by the energy economy law for an independent operator.

The Bundesnetzagentur adds that the certification process will remain paralyzed until the company completes the transfer of assets and personnel to the German subsidiary.

Upon completion of this process, the Agency will review the documents submitted by the German-based company as a new applicant.

If all the requirements are met, the Agency will have a period of four months to draft a decision, which according to Community law will be transferred to the European Commission for it to take a position on the matter.

The statement concludes by noting that the German Ministry of Economy and Energy and the European Commission were informed of the decision to stop the process in advance and that this was also communicated to the interested parties before its publication.

Through Ukraine

This year, the Federal Network Agency had already refused to exempt the pipeline from compliance with the amended EU gas directive, also known as the Third Energy Package.

Related news

The pipeline operator appealed the decision to a German court in June, which agreed with the German agency.

It is planned that Nord Stream 2, whose construction ended last august, transporting Russian gas to Germany through the bottom of the Baltic Sea, avoiding transit through Ukraine.

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