WARSAW, Poland, Dec. 28 (UPI) -- A Polish natural gas company said it would use any means necessary to ensure its energy sector is secured from the domination of Russian suppliers.
The Polish company known by its initials PGNiG issued a complaint to European justice officials that said Russian energy company Gazprom was not in compliance with rulings on the regional gas market, namely the Russian company's access to the OPAL pipeline.
The European courts ruled Gazprom is barred from securing more than 80 percent of the pipeline's transit capacity. PGNiG pointed to media statements that said Gazprom is already using at least 81 percent, however. This, the company said, "will have serious and negative impact on the security, stability and competitiveness of gas supplies to Poland."
Access to OPAL is necessary if the Russian natural gas company is to twin its Nord Stream natural gas pipeline running through the Baltic Sea to Germany. In early 2016, a Polish antitrust authority found plans to expand Nord Stream might lead to restriction of competition because of Gazprom's dominant position in the country's gas market.
According to the Polish energy company, Gazprom is striving for "complete dominance" over parts of the European energy market.
"PGNiG will undertake any measures available to ensure stability and security of gas supplies to Polish consumers, even if it means a conflict with European institutions," the company said in a statement.
Europe aims to break the Russian grip on the energy sector by relying instead in rival producers like Azerbaijan. Liquefied natural gas, which is less exposed to geopolitical rows, could also play a role in European diversification schemes.
Gazprom started calling for tenders to lay new sections of Nord Stream earlier this year, adding the additional components could be in service at some point in 2019.