Gazprom names date for launch of Nord Stream 2
According to a company presentation made for Investor Day, Gazprom’s Nord Stream 2 will supposedly be launched by the end of 2020.
A similar time frame for the completion of the gas pipeline was mentioned in January by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who said that Nord Stream 2 would be operational by the end of 2020 or the start of 2021.
The project involves the construction of two lines of a 1224 km long pipe along the bottom of the Baltic Sea. The pipeline will be used to transport gas from Russia to Germany, and will have a capacity of 55 billion cubic meters per year. The operator of the project is Nord Stream AG, which is owned exclusively by Gazprom.
The pipeline was originally meant to be completed by the end of 2019, but was delayed as a result of US sanctions. In December last year, US President Donald Trump signed the defense budget, which included sanctions against the companies involved in Nord Stream 2 project. The Swiss company Allseas, whose ship was being used to lay the pipeline, was forced to terminate its involvement in order to avoid crippling sanctions.
Putin has promised that the project will be completed in spite of the sanctions, and said that Russia can do it independently, without any partners. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that Nord Stream 2 must be completed. According to her, Germany views it as an economic project, and will continue to support it. In December, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said that the Russian vessel “Akademik Cherskiy” could be used to complete the pipe-laying work. He noted that less than 160 km of pipeline remains to be laid.