Nord Stream 2 in communication with a German regulator over certification issues with Nordstream 2
- Summary of the following items:
- Conversation on compliance concerns is underway.
- Markets fret over tight supply, but Russia claims it can deliver.
- No word on a possible timing for this.
- Companies in Ukraine want to be part of the licensing process. They want their names to become part.
FRANKFURT, Oct 22, Germany's energy regulator said on Friday that it is in contact with the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline consortium and expects it will provide assurances that the project meets the regulator' s requirements.
The regulator also said it was considering applications by Ukrainian gas firm Naftogaz and Ukrainian gasoline grid company GTSOU to participate in the certifying process for the pipeline.
The Nord Stream 2 pipeline is completed and ready to transport Russian gas to Europe, but nothing is flowing as it still awaits approval from Germany's energy regulator.
The United States and Ukraine, among others, have opposed Europe's most controversial energy project, which is headed by Russian gas giant Gazprom (GAZP.MM).
The German government has until early January to certify the pipeline, but may take a decision earlier.
"We are in discussions with Nord Stream 2 and expect that the necessary evidence will be provided," the regulator, Bundesnetzagentur, stated in a statement.
"At the Bundesnetzagentur, we are concerned about compliance with the regulations," it added.
The German government said earlier this month it had asked the pipeline operator, Swiss-based Nord Stream 2 AG, to show it met all regulatory requirements before the pipe was launched into service.
Nord Stream 2 is currently under a four-month certification process, with specialized attention paid to the issues of non-discriminatory network access on German territory and the integration of the interconnector into the German gas market area.
In a tight market with soaring prices as winter approaches, gas markets are eagerly awaiting information about the pipeline.
Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that Russia may start supplies as soon as Germany gives the green light, which also requires input from the federal economy ministry in Berlin on whether or not the infrastructure puts gas supply security at risk.
After the German verdict, the EU Commission has two months to review that assessment, so that certification may take time.
PGNiG (PGN.WA) (PGN.Pgnig) on Thursday issued a statement warning of increased threats to the safety of gas supplies if Nord Stream 2 was to start operations. Read more.
Russia having a chance to bypass Ukraine once Nord Stream 2 is operational has much to gain from Ukraine, which in 2019 signed 'five-year' agreement with Russian gas giant Gazprom (GAZP.MM) over gas transit to Europe, complicated by political tensions between the two.