The Assembly has expressed its concern about the danger of using energy supplies as an instrument of political pressure in its Resolution 1531 (2007), adopted following the incident which took place in January 2006 when the gas supply from the Russian Federation to Ukraine was significantly reduced as a result of a unilateral decision threatening the economic stability in the latter country.
Since then, new developments raising much concern have taken place. The recent decision taken by Gazprom and supported by the Russian Government, to radically decrease the gas supply towards Ukraine as of 1 January 2009, has had serious consequences for many European countries.
Even if this concrete dispute has been settled, and Gazprom and Naftogaz Ukraine have concluded an agreement for the next ten years, the broader problem of energy security for Europe remains open. The questions of diversification of sources and ways of transport need thorough and transparent debate at the pan-European level.
We are fully aware that the Czech Presidency of the European Union has made energy security one of its priorities. We are convinced, however, that the debate should not be limited to 27 countries, and that the Council of Europe, and in particular the Parliamentary Assembly, provides a better platform for common search for solutions. The obvious advantage of our Organisation is that it has, among its members, both suppliers and receivers of energy.
Therefore we propose to continue the debate on the peril of using energy supply as an instrument of political pressure, and prepare a report on this subject.