MOSCOW, May 22. /TASS/. The US’ decision not to impose sanctions against the operator of the Nord Stream 2 project may speed up completion of the gas pipeline’s construction, Fitch group director Dmitry Marinchenko told TASS, adding that the launch of the pipeline may be expected within a couple of months.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed earlier this week that it is in American national interests not to impose sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 operator, Nord Stream 2 AG, and the company’s Chief Executive Officer Matthias Warnig. Meanwhile, he noted that Washington decided to impose sanctions against a number of participants of the pipeline’s construction.
Marinchenko finds it difficult to estimate the precise date of completion of construction now as the issue is only about lifting of part of sanctions. "But in any case, the removal of even part of sanctions is good news and increases the chances that the construction of the gas pipeline may be completed within several months, meaning by the end of the year," he said.
Director General of the National Energy Institute Sergey Pravosudov believes that maintaining the status quo of the pipeline’s construction will be the main effect of the US’ decision on the project. The adoption of new sanctions could have postponed the commissioning of Nord Stream 2, whereas now it is going to be implemented as announced earlier, he said.
"It could have slowed down the project, another operator would have been set up. It could have made the situation more difficult, but it would have not resulted in the project’s closing, it is impossible as it is almost 100% ready," the expert noted.
The Nord Stream 2 project envisages the construction of two pipelines with a total capacity of 55 bln cubic meters per year from the coast of Russia through the Baltic Sea to Germany. The works were suspended in December 2019 after the Swiss Allseas abandoned pipe-laying due to possible US sanctions. In December 2020, the construction of the pipeline resumed. As of March 31, the gas pipeline was 95% completed.