* Project would double Germany’s Russian gas intake capacity
* EU has urged diversification away from Russian energy imports
* Group of nations wrote letter in Nov to voice concerns
PARIS, Dec 8 (Reuters) - The European Union’s energy chief said on Tuesday he was working on a response to a letter from a group of EU nations opposed to Germany’s plan to bolster its intake of Russian natural gas.
“We are preparing the answer,” European Energy Vice President Maros Sefcovic said.
He said he was in contact with the German regulator and had appointed experts within the European Commission to analyse legal and technical aspects of Nord Stream 2, a plan to build a second twin subsea gas pipeline from Russia to Germany.
Following Russia’s annexation of Crimea, the EU has urged the bloc to take measures to safeguard its energy security by reducing its reliance on Russian energy imports.
For that reason, the idea of doubling Germany’s Russian gas intake capacity has prompted some governments to cry foul, especially after the EU objected to a plan to build a pipe from Russia to southern Europe via the Black Sea and Bulgaria.
A group of Baltic and Eastern European nations wrote to Sefcovic in November to voice their concerns.
Russian gas exporter Gazprom supplies roughly a third of the gas used in the EU, almost half of which crosses Ukraine, a route which Russia is looking to bypass.
“For the European Commission we will always seek the solutions that allow (energy) security for all member states,” Sefcovic said.
There are also EU concerns regarding the long-term pricing of Russian gas.
Sefcovic said he could not make a categorical statement on pricing because circumstances varied, but said the Commission expects more liquidity and spot pricing in the market as volumes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) rise.
$1 = 0.9208 euros Reporting by Barbara Lewis; editing by Jason Neely