Warsaw stuck with Brussels due to Gazprom

The Polish government led by Donald Tusk is expected to sign a new long-term contract with Gazprom for the supply and transit of Russian gas, and the European Commission wants to stop it, arguing that the contract is contrary to EU legislation in the field of energy policy.

Russia hit in Poland?

Experts believe that if the European Commission will be able to thwart the signing of the agreement, Russia will be hit hard in its policy to block access to its pipelines for all "foreign" companies. What is it?

Draft contract between Warsaw and Gazprom suggests that, beginning in 2011in Poland to increase imports of Russian gas to 7.5 billion cubic meters per year to 10.5 billion. Gazprom wants these increased supplies to Poland endured until 2037. Price of supply and transit is the secret negotiations between the partners, but the secret is not a condition for Gazprom to prevent anyone else to control Yamal-Europe pipeline, which goes to Germany via Belarus and Poland.

Who pipe Yamal-Europe?

Brussels says just this condition is contrary to EU legislation regarding kantsurentnastsi and openness in the field of energy supply. According to the EU, other companies also have access to the Yamal-Europe pipeline in Poland.

Now control of the pipeline belongs to the concern Europol Gaz, in which at 48 percent of the shares are Gazprom and PGNiG, the Polish state-owned gas company. The remaining 4 percent belong to Gas Trading, a joint venture between Gazprom and PGNiG.

End of Polish diversification?

The experts also pay attention, that if Poland will connect yourself with this long-term contract for the supply of Russian gas, it stops completely take care of the diversification of energy supply, which has repeatedly said. In other words, Russia will bind Poland to its gas supplies to more than a quarter century, and no one in Poland will not be interested in the search for new sources of energy.

Now Russian supplies provide 65 per cent of gas consumption in Poland. Polish critics of the new contract with Gazprom pay attention, that, first, no need to hurry, as the current contract on Gazprom's delivery obligation by 2022. Second, they say that Poland is unlikely to be able to consume 10.5 billion cubic meters of Russian gas a year (and Gazprom prohibits Poland resell its gas to third countries). And thirdly, they, like the Commission, raises the issue of diversification of energy supplies.

In Poland, discussed plans to build a terminal for liquefied natural gas to the Baltic coast and the development of obtaining gas from shale rock deposits in Poland are very rich.

"This contract, if concluded, will scare away investors from building a liquefied natural gas terminal and from the development of obtaining gas from shale. Russian plug this market for many years" — yesterday's edition of the International Herald Tribune quoted Alexander Smolar, director of the Stefan Batory Foundation in Warsaw .

At stake is the Russian-Polish "reset"?

Zablyakavanne new contract between Poland and Gazprom seems to be a very difficult task for Brussels as Warsaw, after the tragic death of the presidential plane near Smolensk in April, the "reset" relations with the Kremlin. Sarvanne such a contract would be for the government of Donald Tusk, the deterioration of Polish-Russian relations and the loss of all that in this respect was adjusted after the tragic death of President Lech Kaczynski and nearly a hundred people from the political elite of the country.

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