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Polish president says construction of Nord Stream 2 contradicts EU legislation

The Nord Stream 2 pipeline is to transport gas from Russia across the Baltic Sea to Germany, the UK, France, Denmark and other countries bypassing Ukraine
President of Poland Andrzej Duda  EPA/LESZEK SZYMANSKI
President of Poland Andrzej Duda

BRUSSELS, January 18. /TASS/. The Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project is a purely political project, which is not economically viable, President of Poland Andrzej Duda said at a press conference after talks with European Council President Donald Tusk in Brussels on Monday.

"It is an investment of a political nature. It has nothing to do with economics," Duda said, adding that existing routes of gas shipment from Russia are not being made maximum use of while the project would undermine energy security of not only Poland, but also Ukraine, Slovakia and other countries.

President added that Warsaw will assume measures within the European Commission (EC) to present its viewpoint regarding the project.

European Council President said the EU and Poland have similar views regarding the project.

At the latest EU summit in December Tusk said the Nord Stream project would be thoroughly examined in terms of its compliance with the aims of the EU Energy Union and its legislative regulations. He said the pipeline will not push the energy dependence of the European Union on Russia down. According to European Council President, the EU summit cannot interfere with such commercial projects as Nord Stream 2, and it’s necessary to avoid politicization of the issue.

On December 1, 2015 the European Commission confirmed it had received a letter from nine countries of Central and Eastern Europe, led by Poland and Slovakia, petitioning to block the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which allegedly undermines the EU’s energy security. According to the letter, the new pipeline, which will be the second to connect Russia and Germany under the Baltic Sea, will increase Europe’s dependence on Russian gas monopoly Gazprom.

Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk during his visit to Brussels on December 7, requested to put the project to provide transit of additional volumes of gas t the European Union bypassing Ukraine on hold.

Nord Stream 2 project implies construction of 2 lines of gas pipeline with total annual capacity of 55 bln cubic meters from Russia to Germany via the Baltic Sea. The route and the entry point to the German gas transport system in Greifswald are intended to be the same as for the first Nord Stream gas pipeline launched in 2011. The project will be implemented by the New European Pipeline AG. In this company, Gazprom will hold 51% while German E.ON and BASF/Wintershall, British-Dutch Shell, Austrian OMV will hold 10% each, France’s ENGIE will own 9%.