Russia says has agreed deal with EU on OPAL gas pipeline
* EU sources confirm outline deal, no official Commission comment
* Russia says aim is to sign accord by end October
MOSCOW/BRUSSELS, Sept 16 (Reuters) - European Union officials and Russia have agreed a deal on the use of Germany's OPAL link to Gazprom's Nord Stream gas pipeline, a Russian energy ministry spokeswoman said on Monday.
No one from the European Commission, the EU executive, was available for immediate comment on the deal, which ends months of talks on OPAL that runs from the offshore section of Nord Stream through Germany to the Czech border.
A deal could help to improve tense ties between Russia and the European Union, although the bigger issue of the European Commission's competition investigation into Gazprom is unresolved.
"The ministry and the EU have reached an agreement on the OPAL pipeline. The agreement is to the satisfaction of both sides. They aim to sign the deal by the end of October," the Russian spokeswoman said.
Two EU sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said a working party meeting had reached a political deal, which still needed legal endorsement.
Neither the Russian ministry nor the EU sources disclosed details and would not say whether Russia was getting the full access to the pipeline that it had been demanding.
Relations between Russia and the European Union have been soured by EU efforts to introduce more competition and reduce Russian dominance of the bloc's gas market.
Gazprom's access to the 470-kilometre OPAL pipeline has been limited because of the EU's 3rd Energy Package legislation, which aims to prevent firms that already dominate supply from also controlling transport networks. (Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin in Moscow and Barbara Lewis in Brussels; editing by James Jukwey)