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23/01 – EU adopts energy union plan

Today’s European press report that the EU has passed the Energy Union plan, one of the top topics of the EU summit dominated by Greece. “All leaders agreed to reinforce transparency in the gas market, so suppliers cannot abuse their position to break EU law and reduce our energy security,” said European Council President Donald Tusk.

Polish media welcomes this, reporting the success as being due thanks to Tusk. EP President Martin Schulz considers that the Energy Union is extremely important both for supporting Ukraine and for the EU’s long-term energy strategy, according to Kommersant notes that this is the EU’s toughest energy policy initiative since the Third Energy Package in 2009. Former Polish Minister Mikołaj Budzanowski writes in Rzeczpospolita that drawing a new energy map of Europe is Poland’s success in Brussels because it puts an end to splitting the energy market according to what Gazprom wants.

Mr Mládek notes that the position of Gazprom has been weakening, reports Respekt. For its part, Slovenia is satisfied with the creation of the Energy Union as it succeeded in contributing two desired notions: the importance of energy efficiency and decarbonisation of transport. According to FAZ, member states will now have the option of voluntarily pooling their natural gas purchases.

There is now pressure on the European Commission to enforce the opening of national energy markets, and Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič has announced more legal action against the states that refuse to implement regulations. He assured that despite the hundreds of millions of investments the Energy Union will need, the goal of the project is cheaper energy, which is dependent on how fast they can create connections and break the physical and administrative borders between countries. Helsingin Sanomat comments that energy has been a major question of national sovereignty for European countries; and in today’s world this means the fragmentation of power.©europeanunion2015

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