“What puzzled me from the beginning was that the whole case was initiated not by some economic entities, not by EU-based energy companies which could have theoretically complained about those contracts, but by the government of a member state which was at that time involved in arbitration with Gazprom,” Vladimir Chizhov said in an interview to euractiv.com.
“It was Lithuania, that was made public, and they were making some very outspoken statements on that score, boasting of a success that they had achieved with the launch of this investigation. Which of course leaves the impression that the whole affair was political from the outset.”
Chizhov says the case against Gazprom remains a political one.
The European Commission recently concluded a three-year investigation into Gazprom’s practices in EU markets. Last week, the EC said the Russian company might have imposed unfair pricing policies and abused its dominant market position in several Central and Eastern European countries. Gazprom has rejected all accusations.
European Commissioner Margrethe Vestanger, in charge of competition, said last week that the EC’s Gazprom investigation was not political.