By Ed Frankl
Germany's energy regulator said Tuesday that is has suspended the procedure to certify the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline between Russia and the country.
Bundesnetzagentur concluded that it would only be possible to certify an operator of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline if that operator was organized in a legal form under German law.
The operator, Nord Stream 2 AG, is based in Switzerland, and has decided to found a subsidiary in Germany to govern the German part of the pipeline, the Bundesnetzagentur said. This will now need to fulfill the requirements of an independent-transmission operator as set out in German law, it added.
Certification will remain suspended until main assets and human resources have been transferred to the subsidiary, the regulators said.
The pipeline, which runs beneath the Baltic Sea, is expected to double the volume of Russian natural gas exported directly to Germany, but has met a number of controversies and strained U.S-German relations, with U.S. officials having expressed fears it would give Moscow too much control of Europe's energy markets.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires