Cause and Effect in European Politics and Law

The EU is ready to discuss the new Energy Charter

Adelina Marini, May 22, 2009

The EU has signaled readiness to discuss the Russian initiative for the development of a new international and legal base for energy cooperation, said the president of the European Commission Jose Manuel Baroso at a press conference in Khabarovsk, where the EU-Russia summit is held today. He was quoted by the "Novosti" news agency. "We could examine the proposal in the process of the Energy charter review. This is the most important result of our meeting", Baroso said.

The Russian proposal is about a new energy charter which is to replace the existing one, signed but not ratified by Russia. Moscow says that some formulations in it are old and do not correspond to today's needs. The new thing in the Russian proposal, presented for the first time in Helsinki during the visit of president Dmitry Medvedev earlier this year, is the introduction of international regulation of the nuclear materials trade.

In the framework of the summit the Russian president Dmitry Medvedev warned the EU not to turn the "Eastern Partnership" initiative against Russia, reports the BBC. The correspondent of the media added that the summit in Khabarovsk is held against the background of deep division over the issues of security, trade and energy supplies. The greatest concern at the summit is indeed the Russian gas supplies for Europe. BBC also comments that in comparison with last year's summit in Khanty-Mansiysk, at the moment EU-Russia relations are much worse.