EU WANT RUSSIA
The European Commission will present next year a proposal to increase the oversight of natural gas contracts with Russia and other external suppliers, its energy union chief Maros Sefcovic said.
A draft law to ensure gas agreements between governments are in line with European Union rules will follow the endorsement in March for the measure from the bloc's 28 nations, according to Sefcovic.
"We will see what will be the most efficient way to do that," he said in an interview on May 7 in Brussels. "We can propose the European Commission representatives in the negotiating teams, we can propose close consultations when such negotiations are taking place or we can even consider that we would have some kind of standard clauses to make sure that the agreements are in compatibility with EU rules."
The crisis in Ukraine highlighted the need for Europe to tighten energy links among member states and cut its dependence on Russia, which supplies 27% of the bloc's natural gas. To ensure that intergovernmental agreements with Russia don't breach EU law, the regulator should vet their content during negotiations and not just before deals are adopted, according to Sefcovic.
In December, Moscow-based OAO Gazprom halted work on the South Stream pipeline, designed to bring gas directly to Europe under the Black Sea, after the commission called on nations involved in the project to ensure it didn't violate EU rules.
The cornerstone of the European energy legislation seeks to make dominant power and gas companies improve access to transmission networks for competitors.
"We have seen how many problems we had with such agreements in he past," he said. "Once agreements are signed and ratified it's very difficult to change them. It creates a lot of legal uncertainty and political tension."
The commission will have two streams of work: one on intergovernmental agreements and another on a revision of the security of gas supply law, which will address commercial contracts, Sefcovic said. EU leaders in March balanced the need to enforce European laws on gas purchases with concerns over confidentiality of contracts by endorsing a clause guaranteeing that commercially sensitive information can be kept secret.
The EU buys 53% of the energy it consumes from external suppliers at a cost of 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion) per day, according to the commission. About 10% of the bloc's natural gas supply is piped through Ukraine.
|March, 19, 08:19:00|
|March, 19, 08:15:00|
|March, 19, 08:10:00|
|March, 19, 08:05:00|
|March, 19, 08:00:00|
|March, 18, 11:45:00|
PENNENERGY - The Trump administration accused Russia on Thursday of a concerted, ongoing operation to hack and spy on the U.S. energy grid and other critical infrastructure, and separately imposed sanctions on Russian officials for alleged high-tech interference in the 2016 American presidential election.
IAEA - IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano commended efforts by Pakistan to increase nuclear safety and security as the country works to triple its nuclear power capacity. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi commended the IAEA for the support provided to Pakistan in the use of peaceful nuclear applications. Pakistan “was ready to further strengthen its partnership with the IAEA and contribute towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals worldwide,” the Prime Minister said.
PLATTS - "The increase in competition induced new practices in the market that resulted in imports returning to normal," Petrobras' Jorge Celestino said during a presentation of the company's 2017 financial results.
PLATTS - The objective of this program is to increase its domestic refinery utilization rates to 90% from current levels of 10-20%, Kragha said speaking to Platts in Cape Town on the sidelines of the African Refiner Association conference.