Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Gas wars The problem with Nord Stream 2
10 February, 2019, 22:01
However, the project faces opposition from the United States and many countries in Eastern and Central Europe, because it would avoid existing gas pipelines through Ukraine and increase Europe's energy dependence on Russian Federation.
Katja Yafimava, a senior research fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, told New Europe that there has been a proposal agreed by France and Germany on which the vote on February 8 in favour of the amendment was conditioned.
Berlin had been against the new European Union directive but, after France threatened to use its weight to push it through, agreed to a compromise where German regulatory officials would oversee projects like Nord Stream 2, but with European Union regulators having the final say, according to Macron's office.
"The Americans don't want Nord Stream 2 to happen", an adviser to French President Emmanuel Macron said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to be publicly identified, stressing that it was not American pressure that shaped the French position. The United States is keen to increase sales of LNG to Germany and the European Union, which is likely one major reason President Donald Trump has been so vocal in his opposition to the Nord Stream 2 project.
In the dispute over the construction of the Russian-German gas pipeline Nord Stream 2 warns Moscow against new hurdles.
A previous wording of the proposed changes to the European Gas Directive suggested that the EU rules would extend to "the territory of the member states" and or the "territorial sea of the member states".
The draft compromise reportedly addressed the concerns, saying: "We consider a (gas rules) directive in this spirit indispensable for a fruitful discussion on the future gas transit through Ukraine".
Besides France, opposition has been expressed by Poland and the Baltic countries, who've raised concerns over the alleged danger of Europe becoming dependent on Russian Federation and the subsequent diminished transit role of Ukraine. "Germany will expand its gas terminals with liquefied gas", she said at the Visegrad Summit in Jerusalem.
"We are not for or against Nord Stream 2", a French diplomatic source told the AFP new agency.
But a French government source had earlier told German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung that Paris might do it due to "strategic problems" with Russian Federation. Merkel earlier on Thursday reiterated her support for the pipeline.
Former German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder is chairman of Nord Stream's shareholders committee.
The US President Donald Trump has increasingly put more pressure on the negotiators to ensure they arrive at a deal soon enough. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin are leaving Monday for the next round of talks in China, one administration official said.
In a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court granted February 7 a temporary stay blocking the law while it is adjudicated in lower courts. That order, called an administrative stay, was necessary so that the justices could review court filings from each party.
Senator Elizabeth Warren today announced she was running to rival President Donald Trump in the 2020 U.S. elections. This go-around, Warren needs to deal with the issue now, rather than in October 2020".
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