Council of the EU: an extraordinary meeting to discuss the future of Nord Stream 1

Council of the EU: an extraordinary meeting to discuss the future of Nord Stream 1

Czech Industry and Trade Minister Jozef Síkela convened an Extraordinary Energy Council on Tuesday 26 July to discuss the future of Nord Stream 1 and possible solidarity measures.

The Council meeting will take place a few days after Russia’s planned return to service of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline and the presentation of the European Commission’s energy emergency plan. The Czech Republic, which currently holds the rotating six-month EU Council presidency, wants ministers to discuss EU plans for the coming winter before the August summer break.

The Nord Stream AG consortium, which operates the pipeline, began regular annual maintenance work on Monday (July 11), which is expected to last until July 21.

However, the EU fears that gas will no longer flow through the pipeline after this operation. Mr Síkela said ministers would discuss how to resolve this issue.

“In the event that the traffic is not restored or is only partially restored, we will put into practice the elements that we currently legislate, or we will discuss how to proceed in this situation”Mr. Síkela said on Thursday (July 14).

European solidarity in the event of the closure of the Nord Stream gas pipeline will also be at the center of the debates. According to Mr. Síkela, no specific measures have yet been decided. A fair distribution of gas or coordinated assistance to countries in need are however on the agenda.

European solidarity has recently been put to the test after Budapest’s decision to declare a state of energy emergency, which implies the end of gas exports to neighboring countries.

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