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Russia pushes ahead with Nord Stream 2 before US sanctions

Russia pushes ahead with Nord Stream 2 before US sanctions

Moscow, December 31 - Neftegaz.RU. Construction of the 1,230 km reached a milestone with the completion of pipe-laying in German’s exclusive economic zone.
Among the next steps resuming work in Denmark’s part of the Baltic Sea, where the bulk of the remaining sections of the 157 km link will be located.

Nord Stream 2 said:
  • There are approximately 120 km in Danish waters and approximately 30 km in German EEZ to be laid,
  • We are not in a position to deliver further construction details.
  • We will inform about further offshore construction activities in due time.

Progress on the link is a victory for Vladimir Putin and the nation’s gas export champion Gazprom.
When complete, the project will allow Russia to expand deliveries of gas to Europe and circumvent the traditional transport corridor through Ukraine.
The U.S. and Eastern European nations say Nord Stream 2 will make Germany and the EU too reliant on Russian gas.

Work on the $11.6 billion project stopped a year ago by U.S. sanctions and resumed only earlier this month when Gazprom found its own ship to lay the pipeline.
The Danish Maritime Authority said:
  • Nord Stream 2 can use the vessel Fortuna to carry out the work starting Jan. 15, assisted by construction vessels Murman and Baltiyskiy Issledovatel and other supply ships, .
  • Based on the Danish permit, the operator must submit an updated schedule to the nation’s Energy Agency prior to carrying out the works.So far, the regulator hasn’t received the updated plan.
The Fortuna vessel can lay as much as 1 km of pipes per day.

At that rate, analysts estimate Nord Stream 2 could start operations as soon as the end of 2021 under an optimistic scenario.

The. US meanwhile is maneuvering to tighten sanctions, extending penalties to companies that provide technical certification and insurance for the work.
The U.S. maintains that Nord Stream 2 gives Russia too much leverage over Europe and that American LNG supplies are a better alternative.

Nord Stream 2 benefits the economies of Germany and Europe since the price of Russian pipeline gas is 20% lower than that of U.S. LNG, according to Putin.

Author: Allister Thomas

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