Gas Pipeline and Russia’s hold on EU 26.03.17
EU stalls Russian gas pipeline but probably won’t stop it
A handout by Nord Stream 2 claims to show the first pipes for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline being delivered by rail to the German logistics hub Mukran on the island of Rugen, Germany, in this undated photo provided to Reuters on March 23, 2017. Axel Schmidt/Courtesy of Nord Stream 2/Handout via REUTERS
Russia has the European Union in a bind.
The bloc is divided between eastern European and Baltic Sea countries that see a new pipeline carrying Russian gas across the Baltic making the EU a hostage to Moscow – and those in northern Europe, most especially the main beneficiary Germany, for whom the economic benefits take priority.
The result, EU sources say, is that the EU executive, the Commission, sensing that there may ultimately be no legal basis to block approval of Nord Stream 2, is delaying it as long as possible, hoping to get past 2019 – the date when Russia must renegotiate a gas transit deal with Ukraine.
“There’s a difference between not supporting the project and having a legal basis to stop it,” said one EU diplomat, adding that the aim for now was “a break to avoid the project going anywhere in 2019”.
And for now, that means doing nothing, to the intense frustration of members such as Denmark, whose prime minister challenged the Commission at a summit of EU leaders this month to make good on strong words criticizing the pipeline.
Last summer, seven eastern member states, all formerly dominated by Moscow and at the center of an EU antitrust case accusing Gazprom of abusing its market dominance, sent a letter of protest to Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. They too are still waiting for a clear response.
EU sources say the Commission is in fact cultivating uncertainty by hinting that the pipeline may fall foul of EU rules, in the hope of scaring off Western investors, for a time at least.
And in fact, last July, Gazprom’s Western partners – Uniper (EONGn.DE), Wintershall (BASFn.DE), Shell (RDSa.L), OMV (OMVV.VI) and Engie (ENGIE.PA) – did withdraw from pledges to provide 1.2 billion euros of equity for the pipeline, a twin to Nord Stream 1, which began pumping in 2011.
Germany is also not actively promoting the pipeline for now, with a parliamentary election looming this autumn. “The feeling is: ‘Why use up political capital to defend it?” said one EU diplomat.
Broadly, the plan to bring more Russian gas to Europe plays into deep divisions between EU nations over whether to do more business with Moscow while countering its military power plays in Ukraine and Syria.
Germany itself has taken a firm stance on maintaining economic sanctions against Russia over its annexation of Crimea and its support for rebels in eastern Ukraine.
But it also argues that EU market rules guarantee that the pipeline remains a purely commercial project, while eastern and Baltic states accuse President Vladimir Putin of exploiting energy exports as a geopolitical tool.
Meanwhile, littoral states that feel increasingly threatened by Moscow’s military posturing in and around the Baltic Sea want clarity from Brussels before going ahead with routine environmental assessments of Nord Stream 2.
“This has lots of geopolitical questions and it is not fair that one country should answer alone whether this is an good idea,” Danish Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen said last month.
“This is not a question only for Denmark but for the European Union.”
Russia already accounts for one-third of EU gas imports, and that could rise with the help of Nord Stream 2, as Gazprom fights for market share with the EU’s domestic supplies decreasing.
end of report
What we learn from this is that Europe is growing increasingly dependent on Russian Gas they know how vulnerable this makes them to Moscow’s whims. But they will not perhaps cannot stop this. But this again is not a surprise to Bible Students as Bible Prophecy clearly reveals that Russia and Europe will be closely aligned both Polictically and Militarily at the time of the end.
The EU will become a Federal SUPERSTATE along with its own ARMY and with Russia they will enter into a final conflict with Israel and the Middle East. Germany is the key country in what Bible Prophecy refers to as the land of “Magog”.
They are spoken of militarily as the “King of the North”. Together the Bible says that Russia and the EU will invade the Middle East in the Last Days. So Bible Students expect to see Germany and France taking a greater role in leading Europe. It is also interesting to see Germany taking greater control of a continent they tried to take by war and failed.
Yet again we see in Todays News Headlines words that show how the Nations are fulfilling the latter day alignment of Nations as Prophesied by the Bible.
See this article to learn more about this and the latter day prophecies of the Bible.
See this article for more on this subject: WHAT IS NEXT FOR EUROPE
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