Delaying Nord Stream 2 Hurts Europe’s Economic Development, Warns Kremlin

Delaying Nord Stream 2 Hurts Europe’s Economic Development, Warns Kremlin

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Holding up the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline’s launch is bad for the project’s participants, for consumers, and for Europe’s economic development as a whole, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Wednesday.

Earlier, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz did not rule out measures against Nord Stream 2 in the event of Moscow's ‘aggression’ against Kiev. Commenting on these statements, the Kremlin press secretary noted that "someone regularly, on a daily basis threatens Russia with something", TASS reported.

"It is impossible to switch off the Nord Stream 2 commercial international project, because it has not been launched yet. The fact that it has not been launched is bad both for those who are engaged in this project and for those who consume gas in Europe. It is bad for the economic development of Europe, which, by the way, is also suffering significantly in these pandemic times," Peskov highlighted.

The Kremlin official concurred that the situation in Ukraine is "very tense, indeed."

"We see the deliveries of weapons there, we see various maneuvers and we see flights by NATO and West European aircraft. All these factors make the situation around Ukraine tense," the Russian presidential spokesman stressed.

Moscow would like its counterparts, those in Germany included, to focus attention on this as well, Peskov added.

"And as for relations with Germany, we greatly appreciate them and they are very important to us. We hope that we will steadily cultivate them," he emphasized.

The construction of Nord Stream 2 was fully completed on September 10, 2021. The works were initially planned to be completed by the end of 2019, though the construction was postponed due to US sanctions. 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.

To start pumping gas, Nord Stream 2’s operator has to obtain the green light from the German regulator. On November 16, the Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur) suspended the procedure to certify Nord Stream 2 AG, which is based in Zug (Switzerland), as an independent transmission operator due to organizational and legal issues. The regulator noted that the certification procedure would remain suspended until the operator’s main assets and human resources were transferred to the ownership of its German subsidiary.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on December 29 that Russia and its partners had fulfilled their objective of creating Nord Stream 2, adding that it is for Europeans to decide on it now. The Russian leader noted that the pipeline was ready for operation. Once Moscow’s partners in Europe come to a decision on it, then additional volumes of Russian gas will be pumped into the pipeline, Putin said. He also was confident that opening Nord Stream 2’s operation would enable a decline in gas prices in Europe.

Given the new green policy course, Germany now needs more gas because the country is now gradually abandoning the use of coal and nuclear energy.

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