MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. Russia’s partners in Europe will hold consultations on Saturday with the United States Department of the Treasury for explanations concerning sanctions against the gas pipelines Nord Stream 2 and TurkStream, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak, who is in charge of the energy sector, told reporters on Saturday.
"Today, the US Department of the Treasury and our European partners will hold consultations to receive clarifications of the meaning of those sanctions. They are not worded properly. They in Europe do not understand, first of all, what this means," Kozak said when asked about implications of the sanctions,
According to Kozak, risks could be discussed only after the end of the consultations and after comprehension of the essence of the sanctions.
"After the consultations, when we understand the essence of these sanctions, when they are to come into effect, how many restrictions could imposed on the European companies, it will be possible to talk about that. It is still premature," Kozak said.
Along with that, the deputy prime minister stressed that the time when the US sanctions against the gas pipelines entered into force coincided with the signing of agreements extending gas transit via Ukraine to Europe.
"I have a deep impression that it has had no effect on Ukraine, Europe or us," he underlined in an interview with Rossiya’1 television channel.
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 Russia's Nord Stream 2 and TurkStream pipelines. Earlier, on December 11, the House of Representatives voted for the document. On Friday, US President Donald Trump signed the act and it came into force.
In the wake of sanctions, Switzerland-based Allseas, pipe-laying company for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, reported suspension of pipelay work.
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.