We perceive Russia as a reliable partner and supplier in the energy sector, Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico said after his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on August 26. Their talks, however, did not bring an answer to the question of whether the second leg of the pipeline Nord Stream, to transit Russian gas under the Baltic Sea to Germany, bypassing Ukraine and Slovakia, would be built. Fico has reiterated that Nord Stream 2 would be harmful to Slovakia.
In spite of the questionable future of the Nord Stream 2 project, Fico declared that “we have upheld our national interest and for all the causes, whether Nord Stream  will be or will not be, the transition capacity via Slovakia will be kept”.
It is especially Germany and Russia, according to Fico, who have in their hands real decision making power over the project. The Slovak Prime Minister reiterated that if Russian gas was no longer transmitted via the Slovak pipeline, Slovakia would lose €800 million annually.
Fico and Putin also negotiated the drop in trade between Slovakia and Russia while Fico again labelled sanctions the EU imposed on Russia as damaging for both sides. A session of the Russian-Slovak commission scheduled for January 2017 should help to revive mutual economic relations.
29. Aug 2016 at 23:06 | Compiled by Spectator staff