EU Does Not Consider South Stream Priority – Official
South Stream gas pipeline is not considered priority for the EU, press secretary of the EU Energy Commissioner Gunther Oettinger, Sabine Berger, said on Saturday.
“As for organization of negotiations on South Stream, over discussing the project we, surely, should consider the general context of the relations between Russia and the EU,” she told Itar-Tass.
“At the level of the working group on South Stream, which was organised early this year in order to outline legal framework for the construction of the gas pipeline in the EU territory, it is working on exchange of views on technical and legal aspects. However, we do not have now negotiations at a political level,” Berger said.
The European Commission will represent six countries including Bulgaria at negotiations with Russia over South Stream.
Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak has confirmed Friday that the project had been implemented in compliance with intergovernmental agreements, and thus cannot be terminated. His statement came a day after the European Parliament adopted a resolution for halting the South Stream construction and revising agreements on the project with Russia.
Bulgaria is one of the countries affected by this, as the pipeline is set to pass through its territory. The country could face EU fines over a recent amendment passed in Parliament, which gives the Bulgarian section of South Stream the status of “interconnector”, which excludes it from European legislation.
South Stream-Bulgaria also disclaimed information in some media about disassembled pipes at the construction site. The company confirmed to Itar-Tass work on the project continued in Bulgaria.
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