Russia Boasts “European Partners” Will Help Defeat US Efforts To Sink Nord Stream 2 Pipeline
On Sunday Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak declared that despite still active Washington sanctions that seek to derail completion of the Russia-Germany Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline, it will soon be finished with the help of “European countries and European companies”.
He said in an interview with the national Rossiya-1 TV that “European countries and European companies are interested in it. We are sure that it will be built despite those destructive approaches, which we have seen on the part of the US that certainly, in its turn, has been delaying the implementation of this project,” Novak said according to TASS.
To review, the US position had hardened under the Trump administration and its sanctions on any companies or their executives working on NS-2. Washington fears the pipeline will inevitably make Europe more energy-dependent on Russia and thus more susceptible to its geopolitical influence, while at the same time “punishing” Ukraine.
Germany has remained a staunch defender of the pipeline, which has long been a source of tension with the US. Last week new reports alleged Angela Merkel’s government went to far as to try and arrange a quiet quid pro quo with top American officials to get them to call off the sanctions regimen that’s aimed at thwarting construction. Berlin reportedly offered to spend $1 billion on American gas if Washington would stop piling on sanctions and allow the Russia to Germany pipeline to be finished, which under normal circumstances would be just months away.
Critics of the US position have pointed out it has clear economic interests ultimately motivating its hardline anti-Russian stance, namely the desire to sell its own LNG to Germany. Novak addressed this in the latest interview.
“This project is fully in accordance with European legislation. Here there is rivalry fueled by American partners, who want to supply their liquefied natural gas to Europe, and basically, these are non-market methods of competition,” Novak added in his comments. “And speaking about legislation and the legal issue, this project is absolutely in line with the law and meets all the requirements of European legislation. That’s why the countries taking part in it are absolutely interested in fulfilling this project,” he asserted.
Addressing recent reports that the pipeline is “at risk” of being halted and ultimately sinking altogether under the strain of Washington’s sanctions, the deputy prime minister said further:
“I don’t think there are such risks, because, again, our European partners are interested in it,” he said, answering a question whether there was any chance that Russia would not be able to use the gas pipeline due to the pressure on the project.
Gazprom has recently estimated that only 6% of the pipeline remains till completion. This is equal to about 150km, which Gazprom has vowed to see through to finish with its European partners.
Mon, 02/15/2021 – 05:15