UPDATE: EU Council approves Gas Directive amendments
(Adds details in paragraphs 3Ц5)
BRUSSELS, Apr 15 (PRIME) -- The E.U. Council finally approved the amendments to the Gas Directive on the undersea parts of pipelines, including RussiaТs Nord Stream-2, on Monday.
The ruling will enter in force 20 days after publication in the official E.U. journal. The E.U. states will have nine months to implement the rules in the national legislations.
Nord Stream 2 AG, operator of the Russian gas pipeline project, said it had taken into consideration the final approval of the amendments to the Gas Directive.
УWe have taken into consideration the fact that the E.U. Council has approved an earlier adopted amendment to the Gas Directive formally today. Before entering in force, the draft law must be published in the Official Journal of European Union and incorporated in the national law of the countries members within the next nine months,Ф the official said.
УWe will continue to monitor the process and assess the new legislation and its incorporation in the national law after the publication.Ф
The European Commission put forward the amendments to the E.U. gas directive in 2017, suggesting applying the E.U. third energy package to all pipelines that run through the E.U. territory to and from the third countries. The bills require non-discriminatory regulation of tariffs and provision of access of third parties to gas pumping.
This means that the pipelines must have an operator independent of Russian gas giant Gazprom, and third parties must receive access to the capacities. However, only Gazprom can supply gas to the Russian end of the pipeline and is the only company with the right for exports.
The initial draft amendments were softened in February in Strasbourg. The milder version of the amendments envisages temporary exceptions for the pipelines built before the changes come into force.