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Energy Charter Treaty

Volume 449: debated on Wednesday 19 July 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what plans she has to make representations to her Russian counterpart on the provisions of the Energy Charter Treaty; (85079)

(2) what plans she has to make representations to her Russian counterpart on the Transit Protocol of the Energy Charter Treaty;

(3) what assessment her Department has made of the impact on the likelihood of the Russian Federation signing the Transit Protocol of the Energy Charter Treaty of the law passed by the Russian State Duma on Gazprom's control of gas exports from Russia;

(4) what assessment her Department has made of the Russia Federation's progress towards compliance with the Energy Charter Treaty; [85116]

(5) what recent representations the British Government have made to the Russian Federation on its compliance with the Energy Charter Treaty;

(6) what recent representations the British Government have made to the Russian Federation on the Transit Protocol of the Energy Charter Treaty.

I have been asked to reply.

The UK, with other G7 members, has encouraged Russia to move forward during its G8 presidency and ratify the Energy Charter Treaty, of which it is already a signatory and applies on a provisional basis.

We would envisage that these Global Energy Security discussions will continue during the Russian presidency.

The UK is concerned that the proposed Russian Gas Export law would appear to contradict several of the major provisions of the Energy Charter Treaty, including the provisions on Transit. Through the EU, we continue to work with Russia towards an agreed text for the Transit Protocol while at the same time emphasising to Russia the importance of open, transparent, efficient and competitive markets at all stages of the energy supply chain as the key to global energy security.