MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. Switzerland-based Allseas, pipe-laying company for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, reported suspension of pipelay activities, the company said in a press release on Saturday.
"In anticipation of the enactment of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Allseas has suspended its Nord Stream 2 pipelay activities. Allseas will proceed, consistent with the legislation’s wind down provision and expect guidance comprising of the necessary regulatory, technical and environmental clarifications from the relevant US authority," the company said.
It was reported earlier on Saturday that sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 and TurkStream gas pipelines, included in the military budget for the 2020 fiscal year signed by US President Donald Trump (began on October 1), came into force.
Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday that US sanctions against Nord Stream 2 violate international law and present a perfect example of unfair competition. "Such actions [possible US sanctions] are a direct violation of international law, they present an ideal example of unfair competition and spread their artificial dominance in European markets, imposing more expensive and uncompetitive products on European consumers - more expensive natural gas," he told reporters.
The United States Senate approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) specifying the annual budget and expenditures of the US Department of Defense for 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 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.