MOSCOW – Construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline will be completed despite outside pressure and US sanctions against the project, the Russian Foreign Ministry issued a response on its website following Acting Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s press conference on summing up the results of Russian diplomacy in 2019. The relevant question was not voiced at the conference, TASS reported.
“Despite ongoing pressure, North Stream 2 will be completed. To the clear-thinking Europeans, the benefits of creating an additional gas export route are obvious,” the foreign ministry said.
The foreign ministry has called US sanctions against the pipeline blatant interference with EU internal affairs. The purpose of these restrictive measures, according to Russian diplomats, is not a push for the energy security of the integration union, but to “push American liquefied natural gas” into Europe’s markets.
“We know that not everyone in the EU welcomes this project,” the foreign ministry emphasized.
“Opponents exist both among the member states and in the European institutions. It is well known that the amendments to the Gas Directive were adopted in the European Union, aimed at trying to convince against the construction of Nord Stream 2,” the statement read.
The United States Senate approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) specifying the annual budget and expenditures of the US Department of Defense for the 2020 fiscal year (started on October 1), which obliges the administration to impose sanctions on the Russian Nord Stream 2 and TurkStream pipelines. Earlier, on December 11, the House of Representatives voted for the document.
The Nord Stream 2 project involves the construction of two lines with a total capacity of 55 bln cubic meters of gas per year from the coast of Russia through the Baltic Sea to Germany.
Gazprom’s European partners in the project are German Uniper and Wintershall, Austrian OMV, French Engie and Anglo-Dutch Shell. The pipeline bypasses transit states — Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, and other East European and Baltic countries — through the exclusive economic zones and territorial waters of Russia, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, and Germany.