MOSCOW, March 24. /TASS/. The Academician Chersky pipelaying vessel, indicated as a potential ship to complete the Nord Stream 2 pipeline construction, continues heading west. The ship departed from the port of Nakhodka in the Russian Far East and is now navigating around Africa. The current direction is Cape Town in South Africa, according to data of the Myshiptracking web portal.
The vessel is to arrive at Cape Town on March 27. She has been operated by Gazprom Flot since 2016.
In view of the US sanctions Switzerland-based Allseas, the pipelaying company for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, reported suspension of pipelay activities in late December 2019 and took its pipelaying vessels away.
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. The project is 93% complete to date.