France ceases to support Germany on Nord Stream 2 – media report
Germany cannot count on French to help it block an amendment to an EU regulation which would give the a Union greater say in the construction of the contentious Russian-German natural gas pipeline Nord Stream 2, write Leo Klimm and Alexander Mühlauer in the Süddeutsche Zeitung. “We do not want to increase dependence on Russia and at the same time harm the interests of EU countries like Poland and Slovakia,” French government sources told Süddeutsche. The European Commission wants to change EU law so that in the future, gas pipelines connecting non-member states to the EU come under European regulation. Süddeutsche writes that Germany has the support of the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Greece and Cyprus, but this is not enough to ensure that it would win the vote.
The Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline, currently under construction under the Baltic Sea, has been the subject of heated debates for years. The project, scheduled for completion in late 2019, would allow additional Russian gas to flow directly to Germany. Proponents argue the pipeline is a commercial investment and is key to Europe's supply security, while opponents object to Nord Stream 2 on environmental, geopolitical and security grounds.