Poland to take part in Nord Stream 2 certification

The Polish oil and gas company PGNiG received the right to participate in the certification of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, the company said in a statement.

"The German Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur, BNetzA) has granted Polskie Górnictwo Naftowe i Gazownictwo SA and its German subsidiary - PGNiG Supply & Trading GmbH participation in the certification proceedings for Nord Stream 2," the statement reads.

The Polish side argues that Nord Stream 2 does not meet the formal requirements for certification under the preferential model of an independent transmission operator (ITO) and that "a positive decision of the Federal Network Agency will jeopardize the security of supply to the EU and member states."

"We are pleased with BNetzA’s decision on granting both companies participation in the certification proceedings. The application for ITO model certification submitted by Nord Stream 2 AG proves that the Swiss company still seeks to obtain regulatory privileges. The effects of our involvement in the Nord Stream 2 case show that we can defend our position effectively. In the case of an application for derogation of the pipeline from the requirements of EU law, the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf shared the arguments raised by PGNiG SA and PST GmbH and dismissed Nord Stream 2 AG’s complaint," said the head of PGNiG Paweł Majewski.

Poland also argues that putting the pipeline into operation until a final decision on certification is obtained will be a violation of German and EU law. " Operating without final certification decision would lead to discrimination of other energy companies and distortion of the competition on the internal gas market," the statement reads. For this reason, Polish companies promise to use all legal mechanisms to counteract this.

On September 8, the German Federal Network Agency began consideration of the application for registration of Nord Stream 2 AG ("Nord Stream 2 AG") as an independent transport operator. It has four months to prepare a draft decision and send it to the European Commission "to form a position". Only after this step the agency will be able to approve its decision. The European Commission will not have the right of veto, but its opinion will be taken into account, the BNetzA said.

Nord Stream’s Certification as an independent transport operator is needed in order to comply with the norms of the EU Gas Directive. The representative of the European Commission Vivian Loonela said it make take up to 2 months for Brussels to form a decision.

On September 10, Russian gas giant Gazprom reported that the construction of Nord Stream 2 was fully completed. To begin gas deliveries the project operator needs to provide certificates of compliance with technical standards to the Stralsund Mining Authority. The BNetzA cannot prohibit gas deliveries via the pipeline, but if the deliveries start before registration is obtained, a fine will be imposed on the operator.

  PGNiG, Poland, Nord Stream, Gazprom