Ref. Ares(2022)8176377 - 25/11/2022
DIRECTORATE-GENERAL FOR ENERGY
Mr Barnaby Pace
Rue de Commerce 31
by email: ask+request-11011-
Your application for access to documents – GESTDEM 2022/2229
Dear Mr Pace,
We refer to your e-mail of 14 April 2022 in which you make a request for access to
documents, registered on 17 April 2022 under the above-mentioned reference number.
You request access to all documents—including but not limited to correspondence,
emails, minutes, notes (hand written or electronic), audio or video recordings, verbatim
reports, operational conclusions, lines to take, briefings, and presentations—related to
the meeting on February 18 between Kadri Simson and Naftogaz of Ukraine.
Your application concerns the following documents:
17/01/2022 INVITATION KS 18-20/02/22 to Munich
Security Conference 2022, physical
(2022)6692524 18/02/2022 NO DISCLOSURE 20220218 AL -
Meeting Minutes Kadri Simson with
Having examined the documents requested under the provisions of Regulation (EC) No
1049/2001 regarding public access to documents, I regret to inform you that your
application cannot be completely granted, as disclosure of document 2 is prevented by
Commission européenne/Europese Commissie, 1049 Bruxelles/Brussel, BELGIQUE/BELGIË – Tel. +32 22991111
Office: DM24 08/084 – Tel. direct line +32 229-62496
exceptions to the right of access laid down in Article 4 (1)(a) third indent, and 4 (2) first
indent of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001.
Firstly, a complete disclosure of the identified documents is prevented by the exception
concerning the protection of public interest as regards international relations, as outlined
in Article 4 (1) (a) third indent of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001. Access to the names of
companies and associations present during these meetings cannot be disclosed as it
would reveal content of on-going confidential negotiations between the EU and Ukraine,
in a context of geopolitical crisis.
Secondly, a complete disclosure of the identified documents is prevented by the
exception concerning the protection of commercial interests of a natural or legal person,
including intellectual property, as outlined in Article 4 (2), first indent of Regulation
(EC) No 1049/2001. Access to the names of companies present during these meetings
risk influencing their competitive position vis-à-vis other companies and, as a
consequence, risk hampering the willingness of these companies to cooperate with the
EU to secure gas supply.
Article 4 (2) fourth paragraph foresees the possibility to override the refusal based on the
protection of commercial interests if there is an overriding public interest in disclosure.
In your request, you do not put forward any arguments to establish the necessity to have
the data transmitted for a specific purpose in the public interest.
Consequently, I conclude that, pursuant to Article 4 (1) (a) third indent and Article 4 (2)
first indent of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001, access cannot be granted to the names of
companies and associations present in the meetings between Kadri Simson and Naftogas.
For document 1, I am glad to inform you that you can have wide partial access to some
documents, subject only to the redaction of personal data. Please find enclosed redacted
copies of these documents.
With regard to the documents listed above, a complete disclosure of the identified
documents is prevented by the exception concerning the protection of privacy and the
integrity of the individual outlined in Article 4(1)(b) of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001,
because they contain the following personal data:
- the names/initials and contact information of Commission staff members not pertaining
to the senior management;
- the names/initials and contact details of other natural persons.
Article 9(1)(b) of the Data Protection Regulation does not allow the transmission of these
personal data, except if you prove that it is necessary to have the data transmitted to you
for a specific purpose in the public interest and where there is no reason to assume that
the legitimate interests of the data subject might be prejudiced. In your request, you do
not express any particular interest to have access to these personal data nor do you put
forward any arguments to establish the necessity to have the data transmitted for a
specific purpose in the public interest.
Consequently, I conclude that, pursuant to Article 4(1)(b) of Regulation (EC) No
1049/2001, access cannot be granted to the personal data contained in the requested
documents, as the need to obtain access thereto for a purpose in the public interest has
not been substantiated and there is no reason to think that the legitimate interests of the
individuals concerned would not be prejudiced by disclosure of the personal data
Please note that documents originating from third parties are disclosed to you based on
Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001. However, this disclosure is without prejudice to the rules
on intellectual property, which may limit your right to reproduce or exploit the released
documents without the agreement of the originator, who may hold an intellectual
property right on them. The European Commission does not assume any responsibility
from their reuse.
Access is granted to minutes of a meeting with external parties. This document was
drawn up for internal use under the responsibility of the relevant service. It solely reflects
the service’s interpretation of the interventions made and does not set out any official
position of the third parties to which the document refers, which was not consulted on its
content. It does not reflect the position of the Commission and cannot be quoted as
such.In case you would disagree with this position, you are entitled, in accordance with
Article 7(2) of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001, to submit a confirmatory application
requesting the Commission to review this position.
Such a confirmatory application should be addressed within 15 working days upon receipt
of this letter to the Secretariat-General of the Commission at the following address:
Unit C.1. ‘Transparency, Document Management and Access to Documents’
or by email to: email@example.com
Ditte Juul Jørgensen
Electronically signed on 25/11/2022 12:50 (UTC+01) in accordance with Article 11 of Commission Decision (EU) 2021/2121