Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Thursday he hoped Germany will soon grant permission for Russia to pump gas through the Nord Stream pipeline, which is supposed to carry gas under the Baltic Sea to Europe.
"I do not think we have Germany's permission to pump our fuel through the Nord Stream because of the third energy package. I hope that at least this technical problem will be solved in the nearest future," Putin told a news conference after negotiations with the European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.
Putin said that the commission took notice of Russia's complaint. "We will work together with them," Putin said.
The European Union's third energy package orders the separation of gas sales and transportation businesses and requires the provision of access for third parties to gas transportation facilities.
Russia's gas giant Gazprom, which supplies Europe with a quarter of gas it consumes and also extracts and pumps gas, strongly opposes the package saying it will deprive the gas transportation system of investment.
The third energy package will come in force in EU states on March 3.
The first 27.5 billion cubic meter stage of the Nord Stream project is to be launched in September 2011. The second stage, which will increase the capacity to 55 bcm, is to be launched in September 2012.
BRUSSELS, February 24 (RIA Novosti)