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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Gazprom Denies RWE South Stream Invite

VARNA, Bulgaria — Gazprom denied on Saturday that it has invited German utility RWE to join its South Stream pipeline.

RWE is one of the key participants in the EU-backed Nabucco pipeline, which is meant to help Europe cut its reliance on Russian gas. Moscow has been stepping up efforts to undermine the competing pipeline project.

"There is some misunderstanding. We have not invited RWE in this project. We do not have such a need," Gazprom's export chief, Alexander Medvedev, told reporters.

"The project is by principle open for other shareholders. We are ready to look if there are willing [companies] that have something to contribute, and we are ready to discuss that with our Italian and French partners. But we do not have a need."

RWE said June 12 that Gazprom had invited it to join the pipeline project.